The Effect of a Fundamental Movement Skill Intervention on the Physical Literacy Levels of Children with Congenital Heart Disease – A CHAMPS* Cohort Study: Physical Literacy in Pediatric Congenital Heart Disease

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Matthew Chapelski


Preliminary evidence suggests that children with congenital heart disease (CHD) may have low physical literacy (PL). High PL is a determinant of physical activity participation. Therefore, we assessed the effect of a 12-week intervention on the PL of children with CHD. PL was assessed pre- and post-intervention in 14 participants with CHD, aged 9-16 years, using the PLAY tools. The intervention involved six bi-weekly sessions that consisted of a fundamental movement skill practice designed to enhance gross motor function and confidence. PLAYfun assessed physical competence. PLAYself assessed the child’s perception of their PL. PLAYparent was completed by parents to assess their perception of their child’s PL. We found a significant increase in overall physical competence (PLAYfun, p<.001), along with the domains of running (p=.001), locomotor (p=.002), upper body object control (p<.001), and balance (p=.006). No significant changes were found in PLAYself or PLAYparent indicating no changes to their self and parental perceived PL. We demonstrated that a 12-week fundamental movement skill intervention can improve PL in children with CHD. Children with CHD are at an increased risk of sequelae secondary to their reported physical inactivity, PL development may augment physical activity engagement and provide health benefits to this at-risk population.