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Can J Sport Sci. 1988 Jun;13(2):136-43.

Racial/ethnic variation in the motor development and performance of American children.

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  • Department of Anthropology, University of Texas, Austin.


The literature on the motor development and performance of American children from several racial and ethnic groups is reviewed. The evidence suggests that Black infants are advanced in motor development during the first two years of life, and that Black children of school age, particularly boys, perform consistently better than White and Mexican-American children in running speed (dashes) and the vertical jump, with somewhat less consistent results for the standing long jump and softball throw for distance. In contrast, differences in the motor development and performance of Mexican-American and White children are generally inconsistent and slight. Environmental factors are most often cited as underlying racial or ethnic variation, but have not been systematically investigated. A biocultural approach is essential if an understanding of racial and ethnic variation in motor performance is to be attained.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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