A Comparative of Finger Tapping Test Scores Elite Athletes, Art, Foreign Languages and Computer- Instructional Technology Students


  • Şenay Şahin Uludag Universty
  • Yakup Zühtü Birinci
  • Engin Sağdilek Uludag University
  • Şerife Vatansever
  • Serkan Pancar
  • Ersin Şahin Uludag Universty
  • Erhan Kiziltan Başkent University


Fine motor skill is ability to control and coordinate the small muscles in the hand for precise movements. Fine motor skill have been associated with several other cognitive abilities, including processing speed executive functions and scholastic skills. Fine motor skill in the early years have also been shown to predict later academic achievement, especially in reading and mathematics and to predict underachievement in able students at school. In this aspect our objective in this study was to compare finger tapping test scores between students of art, foreign languages, computer-instructional technologies and elite athletes. A significant difference was found between elite athletes and all groups in finger tapping test scores. Elite athletes performed more finger taps than other groups in the same period. In conclusion, the more importance of fine motor skill in terms of sporting success also explains the difference of the finger tapping test performances between the groups. Keywords: education, motor skills, finger tapping, elite athletes


Arnold, G., K. B. Boone, P. Lu, A. Dean, J. Wen, S. Nitch & S. McPherson. (2005). Sensitivity and specificity of finger tapping test scores for the detection of suspect effort. The ClinicalNeuropsychologist, (19):105-120. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13854040490888567

Barulli, D., & Y. Stern. (2013). Efficiency, capacity, compensation, maintenance, plasticity: Emerging concepts in cognitive reserve. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 17(10): 502–509.

Barut, Ç., E. Kızıltan, E. Gelir & F. Köktürk. (2013). Advanced analysis of finger-tapping performance: a preliminary study. Balkan Med J. 2013 Jun; 30(2): 167–171.

Barut, Ç., K. Gökdemir, Ö. Sevinç, H. Kudak & M. Gümüş. (2008). Boksörlerde el morfolojisi ve el tercihinin değerlendirilmesi. Submitted on 10th National Anatomy Congress..

Bashir, M. S. M., A. Khade, S.K. Kosaraju, C.V. Kumar & U. Rani. (2019). Comparative study of psychomotor performance in depression patients with healthy volunteers. Research & Reviews: Journal of Medical Science and Technology, 2(1): 15-18.

Brown, S.G., E.A. Roy, L.E. Rohr & P.J. Bryden. (2006). Using hand performance measures to predict handedness. Laterality, (11):1-14.

Bruininks, R. H., & Bruininks, B. D. (2005). Bruininks-Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency, 2nd Edn. Minneapolis, MN: NCS Pearson.

Chaabne, H., E. Franchini, S. Sterkowicz, M. Tabben, Y. Hachana & K. Chamari, (2015). Physiological responses to karate specific activities. Sci. Sport, (30): 179–187. doi: 10.1016/j.scispo.2015.03.002

Çıplak, E. (2010). Sporcuların El Performanslarının Fınger Tappıng (Parmak Vuruş) Yöntemi İle Değerlendirilmesi, Gazi University Institute of Health Sciences Department of Physical Education and Sports, unpublished PhD Thesis.

Dinehart, L. & L. Manfra. (2013). Associations between low-income children’s fine motor skills in preschool and academic performance in second grade. Early Educ. Dev. 24:138–161. doi: 10.1080/10409289.2011.636729

Dwolatzky, T., V. Whitehead, G.M. Doniger, E.S. Simon, A. Schweiger, D. Jaffe & H. Chertkow. (2004). Validity of the MindstreamsTM computerized cognitive battery for mild cognitive impairment. Journalof MolecularNeuroscience, (24):33-44.

Gökdemir, K., Ç. Barut, Ö. Sevinç, M. Gümüş, E. Kara & H. Kudak. (2007). Masa tenisi oyuncularında el morfolojisi ve el tercihinin değerlendirilmesi. Submitted on 11th National anatomy Congress.

Grissmer, D., K.J. Grimm, S.M. Aiyer, W.M. Murrah & J.S. Steele. (2010). Fine motor skills and early comprehension of the world: two new school readiness indicators. Dev. Psychol, (46): 1008-1017. doi: 10.1037/ a0020104

Jobbágy, A., P. Harcos, R. Karoly & G. Fazekas. (2005). Analysis of finger-tapping movement. J Neurosci Methods, (1): 29-39.

Jobbágy, A., P. Harcos, R. Karoly & G. Fazekas. (2005). Analysis of finger-tapping movement. J Neurosci Methods, (141): 29–39

Kızıltan, E., Ç. Barut & E. Gelir. (2006). A high-precision, low cost system for evaluating finger-tapping tasks. Int J Neurosci, (116):1471–1480.

Livesey, D., J. Keen, J. Rouse & F. White. (2006). The relationship between measures of executive function, motor performance and externalising behaviour in 5- and 6-year-old children. Hum. Mov. Sci, 25:50–64. doi: 10.1016/j.humov.2005.10.008

Meyer, A. & T. Sagvolden. (2006). Fine motor skills in South African children with symptoms of ADHA: influence of subtype, gender, age, and hand dominance. Behav Brain Funct, 2(1):33.

Monda, V., A. Valenzano, F. Moscatelli, M. Salerno, F. Sessa, A.I. Triggiani, ... and L. Cipolloni. (2017). Primary motor cortex excitability in karate athletes: a transcranial magnetic stimulation study. Frontiers in physiology, 8: 695.

Morales, J., L.M. Gonzalez, M. Guerra, C. Virgili & V. Unnithan. (2011). Physical activity, perceptual-motor performance, and academic learning in 9-to-16-years-old school children. Int. J. Sport Psychol. 42: 401–415.

Mori, S., Y. Ohtani & K. Imanaka. (2002). Reaction times and anticipatory skills of karate athletes. Human movement science, 21(2): 213-230.

Moscatelli, F., G. Messina, A. Valenzano, A. Petito, A.I. Triggiani, A. Messina, ... and M. Monda. (2016). Differences in corticospinal system activity and reaction response between karate athletes and non-athletes. Neurological Sciences, 37(12): 1947-1953.

Moscatelli, F., G. Messina, A. Valenzano, A. Petito, A.I. Triggiani, M.A.P. Ciliberti, … and M. Monda. (2015). Relationship between RPE and blood lactate after fatiguing handgrip exercise in taekwondo and sedentary subjects. Biol Med (Aligarh), 1(2).

Muiños, M., & S. Ballesteros. (2013). Visuospatial attention and motor skills in kung fu athletes. Perception, 42(10):1043-1050.

Nalcaci, E., C. Kalaycioglu, M. Cicek & Y. Genc. (2001). The relationship between handedness and fine motor performance. Cortex, (37):493–500.

Pitchford, N. J., C. Papini, L.A. Outhwaite and A. Gulliford. (2016). Fine motor skills predict maths ability better than they predict reading ability in the early primary school years. Frontiers in psychology, (7):783.

Prigatano, G. P., C.W.P. Goncalves, S.B. de Oliveira, S.M. Denucci, R.M. Pereira & L.W. Braga. (2019). Kinematic recordings while performing a modified version of the Halstead Finger Tapping Test: Age, sex, and education effects. Journal of clinical and experimental neuropsychology, 1-13. doi.org/10.1080/13803395.2019.1665170

Rigoli, D., J.P. Piek, R. Kane & J. Oosterlaan. (2012). An examination of the relationship between motor coordination and executive functions in adolescents. Dev. Med. Child Neurol, 54: 1025–1031. doi: 10.1111/j.1469- 8749.2012.04403.x

Ripoll, H., Y. Kerlirzin, J. Stein & B. Reine. (1995). Analysis of information processing, decision making, and visual strategies in complex problem solving sport situations. Human Movement Science, (14): 325–349

Rosselli, M. & A. Ardila. (2003). The impact of culture and education on non-verbal neuropsychological measurements: A critical review. Brain and cognition, 52(3), 326-333.

Sağdilek, E., Ş. Şahin, E. Kızıltan & B. Akova. (2017). Sporcu performans değerlendirilmesinde parmak vuru testinin yeri, 15. International Sport Sciences Congress 15-18th November 2017, Antalya

Schweiger, A., G.M. Doniger, T. Dwolatzky, D. Jaffe & E.S. Simon. (2003). Reliability of a novel computerized neuropsychological battery for mild cognitive impairment. Acta Neuropsychologica, (1): 407-413.

Shimoyama, I., T. Ninchoji & K. Umera. (1990). The finger-tapping test. A quantitative analysis. Arch Neurol, 47(6):681-684.

Tan, K.S.Y. (2004). Constructing a martial tradition: rethinking a popular history of karate-dou. J. Sport Soc. 28: 169–192. doi: 10.1177/0193723504264772

Wassenberg, R., F.J.M. Feron, A.G.H. Kessels, J.G.M. Hendriksen, A.C. Kalff, M. Kroes, et.al. (2005). Relation between cognitive and motor performance in 5- to 6-year-old children: results from a large-scale cross-sectional study. Child Dev, 76: 1092–1103. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.2005.00899.x

Wilken, J. A., R. Kane, C.L. Sullivan, M. Wallin, J.B. Usiskin, M.E. Quig … and D. Kerr. (2003). The utility of computerized neuropsychological assessment of cognitive dysfunction in patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis. Multiple Sclerosis Journal, 9(2): 119-127.

Zahodne, L. B., Y. Stern & J.J. Manly. (2015). Differing effects of education on cognitive decline in diverse elders with low versus high educational attainment. Neuropsychology, 29(4): 649.