Aim The present study investigated the effects of varying the cognitive demands of a memory task (a suprapostural task) while recording postural motion on two groups of children, one diagnosed with developmental coordination disorder (DCD) and an age-matched group of typically developing children. Method Two groups, each comprising 38 child volunteers (21 males, 17 females) aged 9 to 10years, participated in the study. Each child performed a digital memory task at two levels of difficulty, low and high. Positional variability (standard deviation of position) of the head and torso were recorded as the biomechanical responses to the variation in task difficulty. Results Both groups significantly reduced postural motion when engaged in the high-difficulty condition (p<0.05) compared with the low-difficulty condition. Children with DCD exhibited significantly higher levels of postural motion (p<0.05) than the typically developing children. The typically developing children significantly reduced their postural motion in the high-difficulty condition (p<0.05) compared with the low-difficulty condition, whereas children with DCD did not. Interpretation Our results suggest that the postural responses of children with DCD differ from those of typically developing children while engaging in a memory task with various levels of difficulty.
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