The effect of physical activity on spatial perception and attention in early childhood

Sima Zach, Varda Inglis, Orly Fox, Itay Berger, Ayelet Stahl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


This study examined whether physical activity improves spatial perception and attention in early childhood. A pre-post intervention trials design with intervention and control groups was implemented. Participants were 123 kindergarten children, divided into three groups: experimental-orienteering, experimental-dance, and control-no intervention. Instrumentations: attention measured by the MOXO-CPT, a computerized test, and The Cognitive Modifiability Battery Reproduction of Patterns measured spatial abilities. Measurements were conducted pre- and post-interventions. Results showed fast improvement from pre- to post-intervention, achieved simultaneously in both EFs for the experimental groups only. No differences were found between boys and girls. It was concluded that in order to successfully achieve the required tasks, an integration of physical and cognitive skills is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-39
Number of pages9
JournalCognitive Development
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Attention
  • Dance
  • Early childhood
  • Executive functions
  • Orienteering
  • Spatial perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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