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Visualisation of Fundamental Movement Skills (FMS): An Iterative Process Using an Overarm Throw

Abstract

Fundamental Movement Skills (FMS) are precursor gross motor skills to more complex or specialised skills and are recognised as important indicators of physical competence, a key component of physical literacy. FMS are predominantly assessed using pre-defined manual methodologies, most commonly the various iterations of the Test of Gross Motor Development. However, such assessments are time-consuming and often require a minimum basic level of training to conduct. Therefore, the overall aim of this thesis was to utilise accelerometry to develop a visualisation concept as part of a feasibility study to support the learning and assessment of FMS, by reducing subjectivity and the overall time taken to conduct a gross motor skill assessment. The overarm throw, an important fundamental movement skill, was specifically selected for the visualisation development as it is an acyclic movement with a distinct initiation and conclusion. Thirteen children (14.8 ± 0.3 years; 9 boys) wore an ActiGraph GT9X Link Inertial Measurement Unit device on the dominant wrist whilst performing a series of overarm throws. This thesis illustrates how the visualisation concept was developed using raw accelerometer data, which was processed and manipulated using MATLAB 2019b software to obtain and depict key throw performance data, including the trajectory and velocity of the wrist during the throw. Overall, this thesis found that the developed visualisation concept can provide strong indicators of throw competency based on the shape of the throw trajectory. Future research should seek to utilise a larger, more diverse, population, and incorporate machine learning. Finally, further work is required to translate this concept to other gross motor skills

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This paper was published in Cronfa at Swansea University.

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