A Lifespan Approach Towards Understanding the Importance of Movement Skills for Health-Enhancing Physical Activity Participation

Principal Investigator: 
University of British Columbia
Faculty of Education
School of Kinesiology
Award Type: 

Participation in regular physical activity is associated with reduced risks of cardiovascular disease, overweight/obesity, type 2 diabetes mellitus, numerous cancers, mental and reproductive health problems, and osteoporosis. Yet, only 9% of Canadian children and adolescents and 20% of Canadian adults meet physical activity guidelines. An essential component of being active involves having the skills needed to successfully participate in an activity. Skill development across time should be viewed in the context of how it leads to skillful performance and in terms of how movement skills support and maintain a lifetime of physical activity.

However, skill development across time is not well understood in relation to

  • how competent adults within the general population are at various movement skills and
  • how the association between movement skills and activity changes across the lifespan. To address this shortcoming, cohorts of 25 males and 25 females in 10-year increment age brackets between 5 and 75 years will be recruited for participation in this study (N = 350). Measures of motor skill competence, physical activity and enjoyment will be assessed.

Key outcomes will include:

  • movement skill development trajectories across the lifespan
  • determination of the strength of association between movement skills and health-enhancing physical activity across the lifespan and
  • determination of the mediating effect of enjoyment on physical activity participation
Research Pillar: 
Host Institution: 
University of British Columbia
Research Location: 
University of British Columbia
Mark Beauchamp