Journal of Human Sport and Exercise

Motor coordination and academic performance in primary school students

Andres Rosa Guillamón, Eliseo García Cantó, Hector Martínez García


Objective: There is interest in studying the relationship between cognition and motor skills for decades. However, there are few studies that provide scientific evidence on the relationship between motor coordination and academic performance. Therefore, a descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted with 163 Spanish schoolchildren aged 6-9 years. Motor coordination was measured with the GRAMI-2 Test. Academic performance was obtained through the average grades of the subjects of language, mathematics, natural science, social science, English and artistic. The variables were calculated: motor coordination index and overall academic performance. The results obtained showed that schoolchildren with a better motor coordination index had higher marks in language, mathematics, natural science and English (p between < .01 and < .05). Dividing the sample according to the global academic performance, those with a good academic performance showed a better coordination performance in lateral jumps (p = .021) and a better motor coordination index (p = .008). These results indicate the existence of a positive relationship between motor coordination and academic performance, which may be this bidirectional link. This study could have practical implications to be taken into account by physical education teachers, such as, the increase in opportunities for physical activity during school and after school hours through the development of programs based on coordinative exercise, and especially oriented towards those less competent at the motor level.


Motor coordination; Motor competence; Academic performance; Childhood; Primary education


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