mental imagery

Motor and mental representation of preschool aged children


Aim of the present research was the detection of motor disturbances, the detection of the vividness degree of the mental representation as well as the study of the relationship between the different levels of motor coordination and the vividness degree of the mental representation among 412 children of preschool age from 4 to 6 years old, who were selected by accidental sampling from Epirus and Corfu regions. The motor test “Motor Assessment Battery for children (M-ABC, Henderson &Sugden,1992).The evaluation of vividness degree of the formation of mental pictures has been made according to “The measurement of imagery ability) (Hall, Pongrac and Buckolz,1985). There were used tables of frequency distribution and their relative percentages regarding the rates of the two variables as well as the factors of correlation Pearson and Spearman.Comparing the results we conclude that a 4.9 percentage of the sample has serious difficulties in motor . It has been observed a statistically negative connection (Spearman r = -,461 & Pearson r = -,710 df = 410,p<0.001)between vividness degree of the mental representation and the different levels of motor coordination. The children who have demonstrated good rates of motor coordination without difficulties have also shown a high vividness degree of mental representation while the difficulties on children’s motor coordination are related to the low rates of the vividness degree of mental representation. The importance of the present survey is double-based. Through the appointment of this relationship between the two variables of the motor coordination (body-motor level) and the vividness grade of mental representation (perceptivecognitive) level, useful conclusions are being extracted not only on pedagogic science but on sports, too. The motor behavior and the motor learning are promoted through such processes of motor coordination growth and the processes of perceptive-cognitive development shaping in that way an all-out child’s personality which is the aim of General Education. Additionally, ways of early detection of children with motor and perceptive-cognitive particularities are being demonstrated.



The traditional approach of the use of mental imagery (MI) considers it to be held in other moments than physical practice, and the person only imaging the movement/situation without experiencing it physically. On the other hand, in the dance field, ΜΙ is often used during movement serving multiple functions. In the exercise field, the information regarding exercise imagery (EI) during movement derives mostly from researches and questionnaires that have mainly investigated its nature (types and functions) outside of practice, so the full potential of this psychological technique, when used during exercise, remains unknown. The aim of the present study was to construct a questionnaire in order to explore the nature of EI used by gym members during their workouts, to control it through a pilot research and to acquire a first piece of knowledge on the EI used by them, initiating the scientific dialogue about this underinvestigated subject. 15 gym members completed the questionnaire [named Exercise Imagery Pilot Questionnaire-Gym Version (EIPQ-GV)] and also provided feedback for its refinement. According to the results produced by EIPQ-GV, EI is used during exercise, it serves all known cognitive and motivational functions, it differs in some aspects from the use of EI outside of practice and its use makes exercise more pleasant and less monotonous, indicating that it is a promising technique that deserves further research.

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