Do Irish adolescents have adequate functional movement skill and confidence?

Wesley O'Brien, Orlagh Farmer, Michael Duncan, Diarmuid Lester

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)
231 Downloads (Pure)


Recent research has shown that post-primary Irish youth are insufficiently active and fail to reach a level of proficiency across basic fundamental movement skills. The purpose of the current research was to gather cross-sectional data on adolescent youth, differentiated by gender, specifically to inform the development of a targeted movement-oriented intervention. Data were collected on adolescents (N=219; mean age: 14.45 ± 0.96 years), within two, mixed gender schools. Data collection included actual and perceived movement measurements; comprising of fundamental movement skills, the functional movement screen, perceived movement confidence and perceived functional confidence. Overall, levels of actual mastery within fundamental and functional movement were low, with significant gender differences observed. Adolescent males scored higher in the overall fundamental movement skill domain (male mean score = 70.87 ± 7.05; female mean score = 65.53 ± 7.13), yet lower within the functional movement screen (male mean score = 13.58 ± 2.59), in comparison to their female counterparts (female mean score = 14.70 ± 2.16). There were high levels of perceived confidence reported within fundamental and functional movement scales. Future intervention strategies should combat the low levels of actual movement skill proficiency, whilst identifying the reasons for higher perceived movement confidence within adolescents.

Publisher Statement: Accepted author manuscript version reprinted, by permission, from Journal of Motor Learning and Development, 2017, © Human Kinetics, Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)(in press)
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Motor Learning and Development
Volume(in press)
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • fundamental movement skill
  • functional movement screen
  • motor developent


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