This study examined the effect of a secondary motor task on walking ability, whether performance differed according to age and the possible relationship between cognitive abilities, specifically working memory, and dual-task costs in children with typical development. Fifty-three female children (mean age M = 10 ± 2 years), were divided into two different age groups: a young (7–9 years; n = 17) and an older group (10–13 years; n = 36). First, participants performed a Walking Test (WT) without additional tasks; afterward, they performed the same walking test while performing each of the following tasks: carrying (1) a glass of water, (2) a ball on a round tray and (3) the combination of both tasks (1) and (2). The Test of Memory and Learning were used to assess working memory. WTs under a dual-task condition generally produced worse results compared to a single-task condition [F(3,135) = 32.480, p < 0.001]. No age-related difference was observed [F(1,45) = 0.497, p = 0.485]. Age, digit forward and backward, facial memory, and paired recall accounted altogether for 28.6% of variance in dual-task ability during WT while carrying a glass of water and a ball on a round tray. Specifically, facial memory significantly accounted for the variance of DTC in WTWT (β = −0.381, p = 0.016). Moreover, a trend toward a statistical significance was observed for digit forward (β = −0.275, p = 0.085). Results underlined that regardless of the age, a dual-task performance might affect walking performance depending on the required secondary task. Moreover, our results showed the association between working memory skills and dual-task cost in walking ability

The role of working memory on dual-task cost during walking performance in childhood

Brustio P. R.
2019

Abstract

This study examined the effect of a secondary motor task on walking ability, whether performance differed according to age and the possible relationship between cognitive abilities, specifically working memory, and dual-task costs in children with typical development. Fifty-three female children (mean age M = 10 ± 2 years), were divided into two different age groups: a young (7–9 years; n = 17) and an older group (10–13 years; n = 36). First, participants performed a Walking Test (WT) without additional tasks; afterward, they performed the same walking test while performing each of the following tasks: carrying (1) a glass of water, (2) a ball on a round tray and (3) the combination of both tasks (1) and (2). The Test of Memory and Learning were used to assess working memory. WTs under a dual-task condition generally produced worse results compared to a single-task condition [F(3,135) = 32.480, p < 0.001]. No age-related difference was observed [F(1,45) = 0.497, p = 0.485]. Age, digit forward and backward, facial memory, and paired recall accounted altogether for 28.6% of variance in dual-task ability during WT while carrying a glass of water and a ball on a round tray. Specifically, facial memory significantly accounted for the variance of DTC in WTWT (β = −0.381, p = 0.016). Moreover, a trend toward a statistical significance was observed for digit forward (β = −0.275, p = 0.085). Results underlined that regardless of the age, a dual-task performance might affect walking performance depending on the required secondary task. Moreover, our results showed the association between working memory skills and dual-task cost in walking ability
cognitive abilities
motor development
school age
dual-task activity
walking
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11562/1045239
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