Visuomotor Integration in Atypical Development




Miller, Haylie
Crocker, Kayla
Patterson, Rita
Bugnariu, Nicoleta


Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



Visuomotor Integration in Atypical Development Purpose Children with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) commonly present with impairments in both gross and fine motor functions, which could be attributed to abnormalities in visuomotor integration. These impairments negatively affect their ability to coordinate appropriate postural responses while interacting with the environment. It is unclear whether visuomotor deficits seen in DCD individuals occur in attaining visual input, integrating visual information with other sensory inputs, or implementing a motor response. The purpose of this study was to determine how individuals with DCD, compared to those of typical development and eventually to those with ASD, integrate visual information from the environment to maintain postural stability. Methods Twelve participants aged 8 to 11 years old, eight with DCD, two with ASD and two controls participated in this study. Enrollment is ongoing. This study utilized a 12-camera motion-capture system, a Computer Assisted Rehabilitation Environment Network (CAREN), ETG 2.0 eye tracking system, a 180° wrap-around screen, and computers for controlling and integrating all components. Participants completed one or more visuomotor tasks. In the Disc Match task, participants displace their center of pressure in medial lateral direction to maintain overlap with a disc moving on the screen from left to right at 8 different frequencies. In the Shooting Ducks task participants select, aim, and shoot 24 virtual moving ducks. Percentage of overlap at each frequency and time of execution per target were analyzed with t-tests. Results Percentage of overlap time between target stimulus and Center of Pressure (COP) representation during the Disc Match task revealed overall trend of decreased scores with increased frequency of stimulus frequency, with the highest average score for 0.2 Hz and lowest average score for 0.8 Hz. All participants completed the Shooting Ducks task within the allocated 2 minute trial, however difference in strategies used to select a target, track its movement across the visual field were identified between children with atypical development and controls, resulting in a longer time to complete task. Time hovering on a target until achieving accurate aim was inefficient for DCD and ASD participants respectively. Conclusions Preliminary results demonstrate support for the hypothesis that impaired postural responses in children with DCD and ASD are seen mostly when visuomotor integration is required to organize and execute the appropriate motor program.


Research Appreciation Day Award Winner - 2016 UTA Research Institute (UTARI) Award