Medical students’ psychomotor ability sportizated improvement to step up their occupational fitness

P.V. Borodin1
Dr.Hab. V.G. Tiutiunikov2
1 Far Eastern State Medical University, Khabarovsk city
2 Far Eastern State Physical Culture Academy, Khabarovsk city

           

Keywords: medical students, sportization of physical education, psychomotor system, psychomotor abilities, occupational fitness.

Introduction

It is common knowledge that psychomotor abilities are always mobilized to support any kind of vocational activity and, depending on the development rate of personal motor qualities and skills, these abilities either contribute to success of the vocational/ specific activities or fail to support them [1].

Contribution of the psychomotor component to the individual labor effectiveness normally differs depending on the types of vocational activity of the subject laborer. Nevertheless, highly developed individual psychomotor resources and qualities should be considered an important asset that heavily contributes to success of any professional career, with the health sector worker’s career being no exclusion of course.

Individual psychomotor system qualities may play a key role for the personal success or loss in any specific purposeful activity in a wide variety of situations [3]. In opinion of V.P. Ozerov, individual psychomotor system performance rates give a comprehensive insight of the personality on the whole and its abilities for specific activity in particular since it is the psychomotor system that is responsible for integration and coordination of different analyzer systems of the human body [2].

It was back in 2010 that we completed a study of junior students of Far Eastern State Medical University (Khabarovsk city, Russia) using the modern “NS Psycho-Test” Integrated Unit to obtain their psychomotor performance rating data. The study data and analysis demonstrated that only 33% of the subjects showed average and higher psychomotor performance test rates.

We were seriously concerned by this finding since we believed that the prevailing poor psychomotor performance ratings were definitely far under the baseline occupational fitness standards and traditions and could be of detriment for the vocational activity of the future specialists.

Therefore, we made an attempt to solve this problem using a special methodology that we developed and offered to improve the psychomotor performance rates of the medical students within the frame of the regular academic physical cultural curriculum – in order to step up their occupational fitness rates for success in their professional careers. This new sportizated psychomotor ability improvement methodology was designed to:

  • Increase the attention focusing ability – that is imperative for the long-lasting surgical procedures, particularly in the context of high stress for the surgeon’s visual system when different optical instruments are applied in the process etc.);
  • Develop fine motor functional control in the upper limbs that is very important for the operating surgeons on the whole and for those of them who deal with modern computerized tools in particular;
  • Develop the posture-keeping endurance in the subject students, with an emphasis on different standard operational postures; and
  • Develop the self-possession skills for the students to be able to effectively work in different stressful emergency situations etc.

The objective of the study was to give experimental substantiations for the special methodology of our own design for the sportizated psychomotor ability improvement in application to junior medical (male) university students.

Methodology and organisation of the study

With the intent to appraise the effectiveness of our special methodology of the sportizated (sport-driven) psychomotor ability improvement in application to junior medical (male) students, we performed an educational experiment (in the period of 2013-14), with two highly homogeneous groups of 20 junior students being subject to the study. Both of the groups were obliged to attend regular academic physical education lessons twice a week. The reference group performed the regular academic physical education curriculum designed by the Physical Culture Department of the University. The study group additionally performed practices following the special sportizated methodology of our own design. This methodology was basically intended to complement the academic physical education lessons by a set of standard special physical exercises traditionally applied by wrestlers. At the start-up and by the end of the educational experiment, we performed the psychomotor system performance rating tests using the “NS Psycho-Test” Integrated Unit. The output data were processed using regular statistical methods with application of the Student t-criterion and Fisher index.

Study results and discussion

The obtained experimental data and analysis gave us good grounds to state that the study group showed expressly higher growth of every key psychomotor performance indicator (from the set chosen for the experiment) than the reference group (see Table 1 hereunder). Comparisons of the final psychomotor performance rates of both of the groups showed a statistically significant difference in favor of the study group students as verified by the following key psychomotor performance test rates: Visual Search and Orientation Reaction (VSOR) Test rates (with application of Schulte-Platonov tables) of the study group of medical students were found to be 9.1% better than that of the reference group; and the Simple Visual Motor Response (SVMR) Test rates were 6.3% better in the study group; in the Choice Reaction Test, Attention Focusing Test, Spatial Attention Test and the Response to Moving Object (RMO) Test, the study group rates were 4.5%, 4.8%, 3.3% and 15.3% better than that of the reference group.

 

Table 1. Key psychomotor performance test rates of the reference group (RG, n=20) and study group (SG, n=20) prior to and after the educational experiment

 

Tests

Prior to the experiment

Difference

p

After the experiment

Difference

p

EG

М±m

RG

М±m

Unit

%

EG

М±m

RG

М±m

Unit

%

1

VSOR, s

46±1,9

45±1,7

1

2,2

p>0,05

40±1,3

44±1,6

4

9,1

р<0,05

2

SVMR, ms

243±2,6

244±2,3

1

0,4

p>0,05

225±2,8

240±2,2

15

6,3

р<0,05

3

Choice reaction, ms

382±4,3

385±4,1

3

0,8

p>0,05

365±3,5

382±4,3

17

4,5

p<0,05

4

Attention focusing, ms

275±4,2

276±4,0

1

0,4

p>0,05

260±3,5

273±3,8

13

4,8

p<0,05

5

Spatial attention, ms

367±3,8

365±3,6

2

0,6

p>0,05

350±3,2

362±3,4

12

3,3

p<0,05

6

RMO, accurate hits, times

11±0,5

12±0,6

1

8,3

p>0,05

14±0,5

12±0,5

2

15,3

p<0,05

 

The above data are found indicative of the high effectiveness of the special set of physical exercises traditional for the wrestlers’ training systems that were applied by the special experimental training methodology. These sets were dominated by turnovers, takedowns, holds, double body-holds etc. In addition, the regular lessons were complemented by situational tasks to be solved in mini-games; time-interval-limited tasks in the training bouts; and special tasks and practices to develop speed-, agility-, coordination- demanding skills etc.

The final key psychomotor performance test data of the study group students were compared to that of the successful medical practitioners (n=20, aged 30-35), the staff members of the First and Second Territorial Clinics of the Khabarovsk Territory Health Ministry (including surgeons, otolaryngologists, ophthalmologists and traumatologists). We used the key psychomotor performance test rates of the above health specialists for benchmarking purposes.

Furthermore, we compared the counts of the average-and-higher psychomotor performance test rates (from among the total set of indicators) of the study group students versus that of the successful medical practitioners, in percentage terms. Given in Table 2 hereunder are the counts of the average-and-higher psychomotor performance test rates, which totaled 76.6% for the study group and 86% for the group of successful medical practitioners. We applied the angular-conversion-based Fisher index to find no reliable differences between the indicators subject to analysis (percentage of the tested subjects showing good quality psychomotor performance rates). This finding may be interpreted as indicative of the fact that the subject 4-year medical university students who took the experimental training course based on our special physical education methodology showed virtually the same psychomotor performance test rates as the successful medical practitioners. Therefore, we have good reasons to believe that the offered academic physical education system improvement methodology in application to medical university students is quite efficient.

 

Table 2. Counts of average-and-higher psychomotor performance test rates of the study group students versus that of the successful medical practitioners, in %

Psychomotor performance test rates

                                              Test groups

Study group of 4-year medical university students

Successful medical practitioners

Below average

23,4

15

Average and higher

76,6

85

Fisher index

φ⃰=1,656;  p>0,05

           Conclusions

The sportizated psychomotor ability improvement method that we designed and applied to the medical university students was tested to be highly efficient. The sport training sets we have developed based on the standard practices and methods traditionally applied in the wrestlers’ training systems were found beneficial for the medical university students’ sportizated psychomotor ability improvement up to the occupational fitness rates typical for the successful medical practitioners.

This gives us the reasons to believe that the problem of the physical education improvement in the medical university curricula may be solved by implementing the proposed sportizated psychomotor ability improvement methodology designed to benefit from a wide range of practices and tools traditionally used in some sport disciplines in the training process.

 

References

  1. l'in, E.P. Psikhomotornaya organizatsiya cheloveka: Uchebnik dlya vuzov (Human psychomotor system: Textbook for Universities) / E.P. Il'in.- St. Petersburg: Piter, 2003. - 384 p.:il.
  2. Ozerov V.P. Metodicheskie rekomendatsii po razvitiyu psikhomotornykh kachestv u studentov na zanyatiyakh po fizicheskomu vospitaniyu (Methodological recommendations on development of students' psychomotor qualities on physical education lessons) / V.P. Ozerov. - Kishinev: Lazo KPI, 1986.- 20 P.
  3. Platonov, K.K. Problema sposobnostey (Problem of abilities) / K.K. Platonov. - Moscow: Nauka, 1972. - 312 P.

Corresponding author: Borodinpetr@mail.ru