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ADHD, Motor Activity and Executive Functions

ADHD, Motor Activity and Executive Functions from Your Therapy Source Inc

Research in Developmental Disabilities published a study on the motor activity of boys (age 8–12 years) with (n = 19) and without (n = 18) ADHD during different executive function tasks.  Motor activity was objectively measured during two working memory tasks, a choice reaction time task (less demand on executive functions) and a reaction time task (least demand on executive functions).  The following results were recorded:

  1.  The boys in the ADHD group exhibited greater motor activity compared to children in the non-ADHD group.
  2. The ADHD and the non-ADHD  group both exhibited the greatest motor activity during conditions with high working memory demands, followed by the reaction time and control task conditions, respectively.
  3. In general large-magnitude motor activity increases were associated with working memory demands.
  4. Small to moderate increases in motor activity were also seen during non-executive processes.

Reference:  Kristen L. Hudec, R. Matt Alderson, Connor H.G. Patros, Sarah E. Lea, Stephanie J. Tarle, Lisa J. Kasper. Hyperactivity in boys with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): The role of executive and non-executive functions. Research in Developmental Disabilities, Volumes 45–46, October–November 2015, 46

TIP: Provide brief movement breaks throughout the school day. Check out all of these brain breaks at http://yourtherapysource.com/brainbreaks.html