Movement coordination or movement interference

visual tracking and spontaneous coordination modulate rhythmic movement interference

Veronica Romero, Charles Coey, R. C. Schmidt, Michael J. Richardson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)
3 Downloads (Pure)


When an actor performs a rhythmic limb movement while observing a spatially incongruent movement he or she exhibits increased movement orthogonal to the instructed motion. Known as rhythmic movement interference, this phenomenon has been interpreted as a motor contagion effect, whereby observing the incongruent movement interferes with the intended movement and results in a motor production error. Here we test the hypothesis that rhythmic movement interference is an emergent property of rhythmic coordination. Participants performed rhythmic limb movements at a self-selected tempo while observing a computer stimulus moving in a congruent or incongruent manner. The degree to which participants visually tracked the stimulus was manipulated to influence whether participants became spontaneously entrained to the stimulus or not. Consistent with the rhythmic coordination hypothesis, participants only exhibited the rhythmic movement interference effect when they became spontaneously entrained to the incongruent stimulus.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere44761
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2012. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

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