The explanation about the result briefly by Dr. Denis Jaeken:
The IKONS study in the context of Erasmus + scientific research was carried out under the direction of the University …. of Rome (Italy).
The title of the study was : Inclusive Karate : a new perspective to reduce the sedentary way of life of persons with Down syndrome and to increase their self-value.
With the aim : to promote and improve the social inclusion of people with Down syndrome by practicing karate through a new method, to improve the basic physical conditions (motor skills, coordination and cognition), to train karate coaches in the new method so that they can participate in the study in a scientifically sound manner and to organize karate competitions with the aim of, among other things.
Oa. inform the public about the value of motor exercises for maintaining a good health status i.e. the benefits of exercise for people with Down.
In a first part of the study, the study groups were put together (Italy, Belgium, Hungary, Romania, Austria) and a survey was conducted about the basic characteristics of the participants (age (age (15-40 years), gender (M = V), basic motor skills (e.g. via the TGMD-3 test), ADL status,…)
Unfortunately, the Covid-19 pandemic in 2019-2020-2021 also had an important (negative) impact on the research with a longitudinal design of 43 weeks.
Some groups had to deviate from the basic protocol.
The start was with 89 individual questionnaires and 83 questionnaires completed by sports facilities. In the end, 57 athletes completed the entire study project in accordance with the protocol.
The profile and movement level of this study group of people with Down corresponded well with the characteristics mentioned in the literature.
We refer to figures published in the Dutch guidelines for people with Down and in chapter 16 : Exercise and Sport of the book Children’s Rehabilitation (published by Van Gorcum).
The results of the 57 people who completed the entire study are clear : there was a significant improvement in motor skills as measured with the TGMD-3 at 0.05 level. (3 locomotor skills and 4 object control skills) and confirmed by the assessment of the parents /supervisors of the participants in terms of interest in movement, better movement, better ADL level.
In conclusion, exercise and sports can make an essential contribution to the health status, including the cognitive and social well-being of persons with Down syndrome.
Karate, taught and trained through the IKF I-karate GLOBAL method (Eric Bortels), is ideally suited for this.
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