Constraints during bimanual coordination: The role of direction in relation to amplitude and force requirements

Stephan P. Swinnen, Natalia Dounskaia, Oron Levin, Jacques Duysens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

61 Scopus citations

Abstract

The present study addressed the status of spatial encoding during a bimanual task paradigm. This was based on the premise that patterns of contralateral interference during bimanual coordination provide a window into those movement parameters that are primarily encoded within the central nervous system. Results showed that both direction and amplitude were subject to (bilateral) interference when different specifications were to be generated simultaneously for each limb. Directional interference was found to be partially independent of the amount and pattern of underlying muscle activation, suggesting that direction is encoded at a rather abstract level in the central nervous system. The findings are consistent with single-cell recording studies that have pointed to the role of directional tuning in various brain areas. Moreover, the findings suggest that spatial parameters of movement constrain the coordination of limb movements in addition to temporal parameters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)201-218
Number of pages18
JournalBehavioural Brain Research
Volume123
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 14 2001

Keywords

  • Amplitude
  • Bimanual coordination
  • Direction
  • Human
  • Loading
  • Movement encoding
  • Spring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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