Motor Profile of Children With Developmental Speech and Language Disorders
Chris Visscher, PhDa,b, Suzanne Houwen, MSca,b, Erik J.A. Scherder, PhDa, Ben Moolenaar, BEdc and Esther Hartman, PhDa
PEDIATRICS Vol. 120 No. 1 July 2007, pp. e158-e163 (doi:10.1542/peds.2006-2462)
a Center for Human Movement Sciences
b University Center for Sport, Movement, and Health, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands
c Hanze Institute for Sports Studies, Hanze University Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands
OBJECTIVES. The purpose of this study was to investigate the motor profile of 125 children with developmental speech and language disorders and to test for differences, if any, in motor profile among subgroups of children with developmental speech and language disorders.
METHODS. The participants were 125 children with developmental speech and language disorders aged 6 to 9 years from 2 special schools for children with communication problems in the northern Netherlands. They were tested with the Movement Assessment Battery for Children. The children were classified by the schools’ speech and language therapists into 3 subgroups on the basis of language tests, oral motor tests, and clinical examinations: children with speech disorders (n = 14), language disorders (n = 46), or both (n = 65).
RESULTS. Compared with the norms of the Movement Assessment Battery for Children, children with developmental speech and language disorders performed significantly less well. Results showed that 51% of the children with developmental speech and language disorders had borderline or definite motor problems. Children with language disorders had significantly lower scores (ie, better performance) on the ball-skills subtest and the total test than children with speech disorders and children with both speech and language disorders. Furthermore, children with language disorders had significantly better performance on the balance subtest than children with both speech and language disorders.
CONCLUSIONS. The findings of this study support the idea that developmental speech and language disorders are frequently associated with motor problems and that the kind of developmental speech and language disorders affects motor performance differently. Speech and language disorders seem to have more impact on motor performance than only language disorders, and it seems that when speech production is affected, motor problems are more pronounced. The findings support the need to give early and more attention to the motor skills of children with developmental speech and language disorders in the educational and home setting, with special attention to children whose speech is affected.
free acces :PEDIATRICS Vol. 120 No. 1 July 2007, pp. e158-e163 (doi:10.1542/peds.2006-2462)
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