Study aim: To assess whether in a special area, such as football, formal thinking may appear as early as at the age of 10 years.
Material and methods: In total 50 children divided into three groups took part in the study: 10-year-old football players from the Premier League Team - level 1 (Group 1; n = 22), 10-year-old football players from the Football League Team - level 3 (Group 2; n = 13) and 13-year-old football players from the Premier League Team - level 1 (Group 3; n = 15). With the help of specific motor tests, the kinetic memory, level of thinking and technical level were assessed.
Results: The 10-year-old children representing lower levels of football proficiency (Group 2) were significantly (p<0.05) inferior to their mates from the Premier League in both the level of thinking as well as in kinetic memory. No significant differences were found between members of Group 1 and Group 3 in any of the studied variables.
Conclusions: The results support the thesis that 10-year-old children are able to use formal thinking in a particular area, such as football. To be aware of this would be of great importance to those experts who deal with selection and talent identification.
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Bloomfield J., T. R. Ackland, E. L. Bruce (1994) Applied Anatomy and Biomechanics in Sport. Blackwell Scientific Publ.
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