Does order and timing in performance of imagined and actual movements affect the motor imagery process? The duration of walking and writing task

Charalambos Papaxanthis, Thierry Pozzo, Xanthi Skoura, Marco Schieppati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The purpose of the present study was to investigate the effects on the duration of imagined movements of changes in timing and order of performance of actual and imagined movement. Two groups of subjects had to actually execute and imagine a walking and a writing task. The first group first executed 10 trials of the actual movements (block A) and then imagined the same movements at different intervals: immediately after actual movements (block I-1) and after 25 min (I-2), 50 min (I-3) and 75 min (I-4) interval. The second group first imagined and then actually executed the tasks. The duration of actual and imagined movements, recorded by means of an electronic stopwatch operated by the subjects, was analysed. The duration of imagined movements was very similar to those of actual movements, for both tasks, regardless of either the interval elapsed from the actual movements (first group) or the order of performance (second group). However, the variability of imagined movement duration was significantly increased compared to variability of the actual movements, for both motor tasks and groups. The findings give evidence of similar cognitive processes underlying both imagination and actual performance of movement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-215
Number of pages7
JournalBehavioural Brain Research
Volume134
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 21 2002

Keywords

  • Forward models
  • Human
  • Mental chronometry
  • Motor imagery
  • Walking
  • Working memory
  • Writing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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