Physical Fitness and Academic Achievement

The Journal of School Health recently published a study that stated there was a significant relationship between fitness and academic achievement.  Children who exhibited fitness achievement (by passing fitness tests in PE class) increased their odds of passing the state English and math tests.

Reference:  Virginia R. Chomitz, Meghan M. Slining, Robert J. McGowan, Suzanne E. Mitchell, Glen F. Dawson, Karen A. Hacker  Is There a Relationship Between Physical Fitness and Academic Achievement? Positive Results From Public School Children in the Northeastern United States Journal of School Health: 79 (1) 30-37 2009.


School Recess and Behavior

Pediatrics reports that 8-9 year old children who receive at least 15 minutes of daily recess had better teacher’s rating scores of classroom behavior.

Reference:  Barros, Romina M., Silver, Ellen J., Stein, Ruth E. K. School Recess and Group Classroom Behavior Pediatrics 2009 123: 431-436


Down Syndrome Health Issues

Pediatrics reports on a recent study that explored health issues specific to children with Down Syndrome. Results of a survey indicated that children with Down Syndrome had higher odds of experiencing recent food allergies, > 3 ear infections, frequent diarrhea, recent head/chest cold and developmental disabilities.   More than 25% of the children with Down Syndrome needed help for physical care and received physical or related therapy.

Reference:  Schieve, Laura A., Boulet, Sheree L., Boyle, Coleen, Rasmussen, Sonja A., Schendel, Diana Health of Children 3 to 17 Years of Age With Down Syndrome in the 1997-2005 National Health Interview Survey Pediatrics 2009 123: e253-e260


Preschools and Physical Activity Time

Pediatrics reports that children in preschools with high quality scores, less fixed playground equipment, more portable playground equipment, less media time and larger playgrounds experienced more moderate/ vigorous physical activity per hour and fewer sedentary minutes compared to other preschool children.

Reference:  Dowda, Marsha, Brown, William H., McIver, Kerry L., Pfeiffer, Karin A., O’Neill, Jennifer R., Addy, Cheryl L., Pate, Russell R. Policies and Characteristics of the Preschool Environment and Physical Activity of Young Children Pediatrics 2009 123: e261-e266


Adaptive Seating

Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation reports that adaptive seating on the floor and the toilet for children with GMFCS III and IV with cerebral palsy resulted in a positive impact on the child’s and family’s life.   Removal of the adaptive seating had a negative impact on family life.

Reference:  The Impact of Adaptive Seating Devices on the Lives of Young Children With Cerebral Palsy and Their Families Stephen E. Ryan, Kent A. Campbell, Patricia J. Rigby, Barbara Fishbein-Germon, Darlene Hubley, Betty Chan Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation – January 2009 (Vol. 90, Issue 1, Pages 27-33, DOI: 10.1016/j.apmr.2008.07.011)


Botox for Drooling

Clinical Neurology and Neurosurgery reports that in a double blind placebo study of 24 children with cerebral palsy, botox was an effective treatment for drooling although there was a high drop out rate in the study.

Reference:  Ali H. Alrefai, Samah K. Aburahma and Yousef S. Khader (2009) Treatment of sialorrhea in children with Cerebral Palsy: A double-blind placebo controlled trial Clinical Neurology and Neurosurgery Volume 111, Issue 1, January 2009, Pages 79-82


Obesity and Motor Skills

Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly reports on recent research that concluded obese children scored significantly less than overweight or normal peers on the MABC in ball skills, balance and manual dexterity.

Reference:  Eva D’Hondt, Benedicte Deforche, Ilse De Bourdeaudhuij, Matthieu Lenoir Relationship Between Motor Skill and Body Mass Index in 5- to 10-Year-Old Children APAQ, 26(1), January 2009


Phenol Block in Children with CP

The American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation reports on research that indicated the a selective phenol block of the obturator nerve controlled spasticity in children with cerebral palsy. Improved hip range of motion was successful for at least 6 months.

Reference:   Kwon, Jeong-Yi MD, PhD; Kim, Joon-Sung MD, PhD Selective Blocking of the Anterior Branch of the Obturator Nerve in Children with Cerebral Palsy American Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation. 88(1):7-13, January 2009.


GMFCS after 2 years old

Recent research indicated that children should be re-assessed after 2 years old on the Gross Motor Function Classification System.  The GMFCS does not seem to be as reliable in infants as in children.   Of  the 77 infants studied, 42% had to be reclassified after 2 years old with the majority classified to a lower level.

Reference:  JAN WILLEM GORTER MD PHD FRCP(C) 1 ; MARJOLIJN KETELAAR PHD 2 ; PETER ROSENBAUM MD FRCP(C) 1 ; PAUL JM HELDERS PHD MSC PT PCS 3 ; ROBERT PALISANO PT SCD Use of the GMFCS in infants with CP: the need for reclassification at age 2 years or older Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology Volume 51 Issue 1, Pages 46 – 52



Deep Pressure Sensory Input

By:  Nancy Hylton, PT, LO and Katy K. Schoos PT, MHS, PCS  Informative article on the SPIO, flexible compression bracing.