Effects of a small-sided handball game on selective, sustained attention and attentional amplitude in a sample of young adults

Rafael Enrique Reigal, Rocío Enríquez-Molina, Carolina Sánchez-García, María Auxiliadora Franquelo-Egea, Falonn Contreras-Osorio, Christian Campos-Jara, Antonio Hernández-Mendo, Verónica Morales-Sánchez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Previous studies have highlighted the chronic and acute effects that physical exercise has on cognitive functioning. However, it is necessary to go deeper in order to obtain precise information on what type of exercise is more favorable for certain cognitive abilities. Thus, the objective of this work was to analyze the effects of a session of small games based on handball on selective, sustained attention and attention span in a sample of young adults. Fifty-two participants between the ages of 21 and 25 (M= 21.83; SD=.94) from the city of Malaga (Spain) took part in this study. A quasi-experimental intersubject's research design was used with a control and experimental group. Using non-parametric statistical analyzes (U Mann Whitney and Wilcoxon) we tried to explore the effects of the physical/sports activity session on four tests of attention span, two of selective attention and one of sustained attention. The results showed statistically significant effects on the selective tests and attention span, although not on the sustained attention test. The findings suggest that collective physical-sporting activity could have a significant acute effect on attention, although it would be necessary to continue investigating the specific dimensions of attention, given the differences found between some parameters and others.

Translated title of the contributionEfectos de una sesión de juegos reducidos basados en balonmano sobre la atención selectiva, sostenida y amplitud atencional en una muestra de adultos jóvenes
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalCuadernos de Psicologia del Deporte
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • acute exercise
  • attention span
  • collective sports
  • selective attention
  • sustained attention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology


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