The Effect of Observing a Point-Light Display on Learning Static Balancing in Children with Mild Mental Retardation and Healthy Children


1 Associate Professor, Department of Physical Education, North Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Physical Education, Tabriz branch, Islamic Azad university, Tabriz, Iran

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Physical Education, Marand Branch, Islamic Azad University, Marand, Iran

4 Assistant Professor, Department of Physical Education, Urmia University of Technology, Iran


Background: The study compares the learning of static balance skill by observing a point-light display between children with mild mental retardation and healthy children.
Method: The subjects are 30 children with mild mental retardation (experimental and control groups) and 30 healthy children (experimental and control groups). The motor task includes a static balance in which the length of time children could perform the skill without error was measured as a dependent variable. Subjects perform the pretest (including one trial), the acquisition phase (including five 3-minute practice blocks), and the post-test (including one trial). The children in the experimental group observed a skilled model performing static balance skills in the form of a point-light display for two minutes before performing each block.
Result: The results show that the children with Mental Retardation who had observational practice performed better than their control group in the posttest. The results also showed that healthy children performed better than the children with mental retardation when performing static balance skills. 
Conclusion: Children with mild mental retardation can learn motor skills by observing a point-light display. In addition, it was revealed that healthy children perform better than children with mild mental retardation in the motor skills acquired through an observational learning process.