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Open Access Current concept

The possible benefits of reduced errors in the motor skills acquisition of children

Catherine M Capio12*, Cindy HP Sit13, Bruce Abernethy14 and Rich SW Masters1

Author Affiliations

1 Institute of Human Performance, University of Hong Kong Pokfulam Road, Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR

2 Faculty of Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Sciences, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven Tervusevestraat, Heverleee 3001, Belgium

3 Department of Sports Science and Physical Education, Chinese University of Hong Kong Kwok Sports Building, Shatin NT, Hong Kong SAR

4 School of Human Movement Studies, University of Queensland Blair Drive, Brisbane Queensland 4072, Australia

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Sports Medicine, Arthroscopy, Rehabilitation, Therapy & Technology 2012, 4:1  doi:10.1186/1758-2555-4-1

Published: 9 January 2012


An implicit approach to motor learning suggests that relatively complex movement skills may be better acquired in environments that constrain errors during the initial stages of practice. This current concept paper proposes that reducing the number of errors committed during motor learning leads to stable performance when attention demands are increased by concurrent cognitive tasks. While it appears that this approach to practice may be beneficial for motor learning, further studies are needed to both confirm this advantage and better understand the underlying mechanisms. An approach involving error minimization during early learning may have important applications in paediatric rehabilitation.

Motor learning; Children; Rehabilitation