British Journal of Educational Psychology

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Volume 28 Issue 2 (June 1958), Pages 97-199

THE EFFECT OF PHYSICAL CONDITIONING EXERCISES AND ACTIVITIES ON THE MENTAL CHARACTERISTICS OF EDUCATIONALLY SUB‐NORMAL BOYS (pages 155-165)

Summary. Two matched groups of educationally sub‐normal boys were used in this study as experimental and control groups respectively., The experimental group was given a ten‐week course of systematic and progressive physical conditioning. Both groups were given physical and mental tests before and after the experimental period.

The results show that the improvement by the experimental group in physical qualities and abilities was highly significant. There was also significant improvement in the mental tests. The factor responsible for the improvement on the mental side is probably largely emotional. It is likely to be a combination of (a) the effect of achievement and success, (b) improved adjustment, (c) improved physical condition, (d) the effect of feeling important.

The conclusion is that these effects have been achieved through the medium of physical activity. From this study there is no means of estimating the permanence of the gains; the improvement is so marked, however, as to suggest that more emphasis should be given to the physical education of educationally sub‐normal boys.

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