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BioMed Research International
Volume 2019, Article ID 2572016, 8 pages
Research Article

The Effect of Judo Training on Set-Shifting in School Children

1Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China
2Guangdong Engineering and Technology Research Centre for Rehabilitation Medicine and Clinical Translation, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China
3Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Jinan University, Guangzhou, China
4Applied Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory, Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong

Correspondence should be addressed to Shaozhen Chen; nc.ude.usys.liam@hzhsnehc and Qiuhua Yu; nc.ude.usys.liam@auhuiquy

Received 14 August 2018; Revised 20 November 2018; Accepted 30 December 2018; Published 21 January 2019

Academic Editor: Jareen K. Meinzen-Derr

Copyright © 2019 Wai Leung Ambrose Lo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Improving executive functions (EFs) is desirable as they are considered to be critical for academic attainment and mental wellness in children. The aim of this study was to explore the effect of Judo training on the set-shifting function using a spatial task-switching paradigm. Protocol  1 compared the set-shifting ability of Judo players with age-matched healthy individuals. Protocol  2 compared the difference in EFs between children who underwent Judo training (intervention) and age-matched controls. EFs were assessed by a spatial task-switching test. Error rates and response times were analysed using two-way repeated-measures ANOVA. Protocol 1. The group effect on error rates was significant. The trial type × group effect was significant in the Judo group. Error rates in the Judo group were lower in the switch trials than the control group (p = 0.001). No significant group difference was seen in the repeat trials (p = 0.764). Protocol2. The time × trial type × group effect was significant. Post hoc analysis showed significantly lower error rates by the intervention group on switch trials compared to the control group (p = 0.006). Regular Judo training may potentially be an option for improving EFs in schoolchildren or in populations with executive dysfunction.