Intellectual maturity and physical fitness in preschool children

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid



There is an important connection between body growth, physical fitness and cognition. The association between physical fitness and cognitive function has been investigated in some studies, but little is known about the relationship between physical and motor performance and intellectual maturity in preschool children. The aim of this study was therefore to analyze the association between intellectual maturity and physical and motor fitness in preschool children.


A total of 1012 children aged 3–6 years participated voluntarily. A fitness test battery and the Goodenough–Harris drawing test (GHDT) were used.


Boys did better in the standing broad jump and 20 m sprint (P < 0.001), and girls had a better crude GHDT score (P = 0.001). With regard to age group, there were significant differences (P < 0.01) between all groups in all fitness test variables and GHDT. Moreover, a significant correlation was found between crude GHDT score and the fitness test variables.


From an early age, physical–motor performance and intellectual maturity are linked. Fitness condition is able to predict intellectual maturity. Increasing the amount of time devoted to physical education can promote cognitive benefits in preschool children.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles