1University of Applied Health Sciences, Department of Physiotherapy, Zagreb, Croatia
2University of Applied Health Sciences, Department of Kinesiology, Zagreb, Croatia
3University of Slavonski Brod, Department of Social Sciences and Humanities, Slavonski Brod, Croatia
Early Gains in Motor Learning Measured Through Two Coordination Tests: A Retrospective Analysis of Gender Differences
Motor skills can be improved through rapid on-the-job training or slower multi-session learning. The objective of this study was to determine the rapid learning differences between male and female university students during the execution of two motor coordination tests. Available data from 716 female and 331 male college students were retrospectively analyzed. The female participants had a mean age (±SD) of 19.6 (±1.55) years, while the male participants recorded a mean age of 19.8 (±1.87) years. Data were collected using two motor coordination tests, each performed in triplicate. The statistical method used in this analysis was mixed-model ANOVA. The interaction effect of gender and number of attempts was statistically significant for both motor coordination tests (F=12.446; p<0.01; η2p=0.13 & F=11.169; p<0.01; η2p=0.01). Post-hoc testing showed that males performed better at the tasks in all three runs, and both genders improved their performance in subsequent trials. However, females showed a larger relative improvement from trial to trial than did males. The two coordination tests yield similar results. The observed differences in improvements in the coordination tests may be attributed to different motor learning strategies and cognitive processing between the sexes.
motor adaptation, gross motor ability, neuroplasticity
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