MOVEMENT AND ATTENTION: AN EXAMINATION OF THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN MOVEMENTS AND ADHD MANIFESTATIONS IN MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS WITH ADHD
Participants: 1,441 sixth grade students, with ADHD, attending East Tennessee middle school
Intervention: Participants were provided with exercise balls as alternatives to a standard desk chair or with bouncy bands for their feet. The researcher then observed the unstructured movements in which the students engaged for 10-minute increments during a 60-minute class period and the ADHD-related behaviors exhibited during this time.
Design: a multiple-baseline across-participants design was implemented, in which the same intervention was applied to similar behaviors of different individuals in the same setting. The treatment applied was the same across all individuals.
Results: Providing students with opportunities for unstructured movement has shown to be helpful in either decreasing ADHD-related behaviors or in channeling those behaviors into different forms of stimulation. The data from this study also supported the theoretical
foundation of the study, the Optimal Stimulation Theory, which suggests hyperactive behaviors occur as a result of insufficient stimulation (Zentall, 2010). OST holds that a student will create stimulation himself if the optimal level has not been met. Since each
of the four subjects responded to the unstructured treatment, this suggests these students were exhibiting ADHD-related behaviors during the baseline period due to a need for additional stimulation. The results from this study seem to support this idea, as students
channeled their hyperactive behaviors during the unstructured movement treatment period through the use of therapy balls and bouncy bands. Once the stimulation was provided in the form of unstructured movement, the amount of ADHD-related behaviors