Conscious Control Is Associated With Freezing of Mechanical Degrees of Freedom During Motor Learning

Wouter F. van Ginneken*, Jamie M. Poolton, Catherine M. Capio, John van der Kamp, Cynthia S.Y. Choi, Richard S.W. Masters

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

This study investigated whether conscious control is associated with freezing of mechanical degrees of freedom during motor learning. Participants practiced a throwing task using either error-strewn or error-reduced practice protocols, which encourage high or low levels of conscious control, respectively. After 24 hr, participants engaged in a series of delayed retention and transfer tests. Furthermore, propensity for conscious control was assessed using participants' ratings and freezing was gauged through movement variability of the throwing arm. Performance was defined by mean radial error. In the error-strewn group, propensity for conscious control was positively associated with both freezing and performance. In the error-reduced group, propensity for conscious control was negatively associated with performance, but not with freezing. These results suggest that conscious control is associated with freezing of mechanical degrees of freedom during motor learning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)436-456
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Motor Behavior
Volume50
Issue number4
Early online date19 Sep 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jul 2018

Keywords

  • Attention
  • motor control
  • motor learning

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