All Title Author
Keywords Abstract

PLOS ONE  2011 

Testing Multiple Coordination Constraints with a Novel Bimanual Visuomotor Task

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0023619

Full-Text   Cite this paper   Add to My Lib


The acquisition of a new bimanual skill depends on several motor coordination constraints. To date, coordination constraints have often been tested relatively independently of one another, particularly with respect to isofrequency and multifrequency rhythms. Here, we used a new paradigm to test the interaction of multiple coordination constraints. Coordination constraints that were tested included temporal complexity, directionality, muscle grouping, and hand dominance. Twenty-two healthy young adults performed a bimanual dial rotation task that required left and right hand coordination to track a moving target on a computer monitor. Two groups were compared, either with or without four days of practice with augmented visual feedback. Four directional patterns were tested such that both hands moved either rightward (clockwise), leftward (counterclockwise), inward or outward relative to each other. Seven frequency ratios (3:1, 2:1, 3:2, 1:1, 2:3. 1:2, 1:3) between the left and right hand were introduced. As expected, isofrequency patterns (1:1) were performed more successfully than multifrequency patterns (non 1:1). In addition, performance was more accurate when participants were required to move faster with the dominant right hand (1:3, 1:2 and 2:3) than with the non-dominant left hand (3:1, 2:1, 3:2). Interestingly, performance deteriorated as the relative angular velocity between the two hands increased, regardless of whether the required frequency ratio was an integer or non-integer. This contrasted with previous finger tapping research where the integer ratios generally led to less error than the non-integer ratios. We suggest that this is due to the different movement topologies that are required of each paradigm. Overall, we found that this visuomotor task was useful for testing the interaction of multiple coordination constraints as well as the release from these constraints with practice in the presence of augmented visual feedback.


[1]  Swinnen SP (2002) Intermanual coordination: from behavioural principles to neural-network interactions. Nat Rev Neurosci 3: 348–359.
[2]  Swinnen SP, Wenderoth N (2004) Two hands, one brain: cognitive neuroscience of bimanual skill. Trends Cogn Sci 8: 18–25.
[3]  Repp BH (2005) Sensorimotor synchronization: a review of the tapping literature. Psychon Bull Rev 12: 969–992.
[4]  Oliveira FT, Ivry RB (2008) The Representation of Action: Insights From Bimanual Coordination. Curr Dir Psychol Sci 17: 130–135.
[5]  Von Holst E (1973) The behavioural physiology of animals and man. London: Methuen. 341 p.
[6]  Kelso JA (1984) Phase transitions and critical behavior in human bimanual coordination. Am J Physiol 246: R1000–1004.
[7]  Summers JJ, Rosenbaum DA, Burns BD, Ford SK (1993) Production of polyrhythms. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 19: 416–428.
[8]  Peper CE, Beek PJ, van Wieringen PC (1995) Frequency-induced phase transitions in bimanual tapping. Biol Cybern 73: 301–309.
[9]  Summers JJ (2002) Practice and training in bimanual coordination tasks: strategies and constraints. Brain Cogn 48: 166–178.
[10]  Peper CL, de Boer BJ, de Poel HJ, Beek PJ (2008) Interlimb coupling strength scales with movement amplitude. Neurosci Lett 437: 10–14.
[11]  Li Y, Levin O, Forner-Cordero A, Ronsse R, Swinnen SP (2009) Coordination of complex bimanual multijoint movements under increasing cycling frequencies: the prevalence of mirror-image and translational symmetry. Acta Psychol (Amst) 130: 183–195.
[12]  Beek PJ, Schmidt RC, Morris AW, Sim MY, Turvey MT (1995) Linear and nonlinear stiffness and friction in biological rhythmic movements. Biol Cybern 73: 499–507.
[13]  Swinnen SP, Carson RG (2002) The control and learning of patterns of interlimb coordination: past and present issues in normal and disordered control. Acta Psychol (Amst) 110: 129–137.
[14]  Deutsch D (1983) The generation of two isochronous sequences in parallel. Percept Psychophys 34: 331–337.
[15]  Klapp STHM, Tyler JG, Martin ZE, Jagacinski RJ, Jones MR (1985) On marching to two different drummers: perceptual aspects of the difficulties. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 11: 814–827.
[16]  Essens PJ (1985) Metrical and nonmetrical representations of temporal patterns. Percept Psychophys 37: 1–7.
[17]  Treffner PJ, Turvey MT (1993) Resonance constraints on rhythmic movement. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 19: 1221–1237.
[18]  Robertson SD, Zelaznik HN, Lantero DA, Bojczyk KG, Spencer RM, et al. (1999) Correlations for timing consistency among tapping and drawing tasks: evidence against a single timing process for motor control. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 25: 1316–1330.
[19]  Schmidt RA (1975) A schema theory of discrete motor skill learning. Psychol Rev 82: 225–260.
[20]  Franz EA, Zelaznik HN, Swinnen SS, Walter C (2001) Spatial conceptual influences on the coordination of bimanual actions: when a dual task becomes a single task. J Mot Behav 33: 103–112.
[21]  Byblow W, Chua R, Goodman D (1995) Asymmetries in coupling dynamics of perception and action. J Mot Behav 27: 123–137.
[22]  Temprado JJ, Swinnen SP, Carson RG, Tourment A, Laurent M (2003) Interaction of directional, neuromuscular and egocentric constraints on the stability of preferred bimanual coordination patterns. Hum Mov Sci 22: 339–363.
[23]  Temprado JJ, Salesse R, Summers JJ (2007) Neuromuscular and spatial constraints on bimanual hand-held pendulum oscillations: dissociation or combination? Hum Mov Sci 26: 235–246.
[24]  Meesen RL, Wenderoth N, Temprado JJ, Swinnen SP (2008) Directional constraints during bimanual coordination: the interplay between intrinsic and extrinsic directions as revealed by head motions. Behav Brain Res 187: 361–370.
[25]  Serrien DJ, Spape MM (2009) The role of hand dominance and sensory congruence in voluntary movement. Exp Brain Res 199: 195–200.
[26]  Serrien DJ (2009) Interactions between new and pre-existing dynamics in bimanual movement control. Exp Brain Res 197: 269–278.
[27]  Dounskaia N, Nogueira KG, Swinnen SP, Drummond E (2010) Limitations on coupling of bimanual movements caused by arm dominance: when the muscle homology principle fails. J Neurophysiol 103: 2027–2038.
[28]  Swinnen SP, Van Langendonk L, Verschueren S, Peeters G, Dom R, et al. (1997) Interlimb coordination deficits in patients with Parkinson's disease during the production of two-joint oscillations in teh sagittal plane. Mov Disord 12: 958–968.
[29]  Walter CB, Swinnen SP (1990) Asymmetric interlimb interference during the performance of a dynamic bimanual task. Brain Cogn 14: 185–200.
[30]  Walter CB, Swinnen SP, Corcos DM, Pollatou E, Pan HY (1997) Coping with systematic bias during bilateral movement. Psychol Res 60: 202–213.
[31]  Spencer RM, Ivry RB, Cattaert D, Semjen A (2005) Bimanual coordination during rhythmic movements in the absence of somatosensory feedback. J Neurophysiol 94: 2901–2910.
[32]  Summers JJ, Byblow WD, Bysouth-Young DF, Semjen A (1998) Bimanual circle drawing during secondary task loading. Motor Control 2: 106–113.
[33]  Walter CB, Swinnen SP, Dounskaia NV (2002) Generation of bimanual trajectories of disparate eccentricity: levels of interference and spontaneous changes over practice. J Mot Behav 34: 183–195.
[34]  Albert NB, Ivry RB (2009) The persistence of spatial interference after extended training in a bimanual drawing task. Cortex 45: 377–385.
[35]  Carson RG, Riek S, Smethurst CJ, Parraga JF, Byblow WD (2000) Neuromuscular-skeletal constraints upon the dynamics of unimanual and bimanual coordination. Exp Brain Res 131: 196–214.
[36]  Mechsner F, Kerzel D, Knoblich G, Prinz W (2001) Perceptual basis of bimanual coordination. Nature 414: 69–73.
[37]  Hurley SR, Lee TD (2006) The influence of augmented feedback and prior learning on the acquisition of a new bimanual coordination pattern. Hum Mov Sci 25: 339–348.
[38]  Magill RA, editor. (2006) Motor learning and control: Concepts and applications. New York: The McGraw-Hill Companies.
[39]  Schmidt RC, Lee TD (2005) Motor control and learning: a behavioral emphasis. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.
[40]  Lee TD, Swinnen SP, Verschueren S (1995) Relative phase alterations during bimanual skill acquisition. J Mot Behav 27: 263–274.
[41]  Swinnen SP, Jardin K, Meulenbroek R (1996) Between-limb asynchronies during bimanual coordination: effects of manual dominance and attentional cueing. Neuropsychologia 34: 1203–1213.
[42]  Fontaine RJ, Lee TD, Swinnen SP (1997) Learning a new bimanual coordination pattern: reciprocal influences of intrinsic and to-be-learned patterns. Can J Exp Psychol 51: 1–9.
[43]  Debaere F, Wenderoth N, Sunaert S, Van Hecke P, Swinnen SP (2003) Internal vs external generation of movements: differential neural pathways involved in bimanual coordination performed in the presence or absence of augmented visual feedback. Neuroimage 19: 764–776.
[44]  Debaere F, Wenderoth N, Sunaert S, Van Hecke P, Swinnen SP (2004) Changes in brain activation during the acquisition of a new bimanual coodination task. Neuropsychologia 42: 855–867.
[45]  Weisendanger M, Serrien DJ (2004) The quest to understand bimanual coordination. Prog Brain Res 143: 491–505.
[46]  Kovacs AJ, Shea CH (2010) Amplitude differences, spatial assimilation, and integrated feedback in bimanual coordination. Exp Brain Res 202: 519–525.
[47]  Wilson AD, Snapp-Childs W, Coats R, Bingham GP (2010) Learning a coordinated rhythmic movement with task-appropriate coordination feedback. Exp Brain Res 205: 513–520.
[48]  Wilson AD, Collins DR, Bingham GP (2005) Human movement coordination implicates relative direction as the information for relative phase. Exp Brain Res 165: 351–361.
[49]  Kovacs AJ, Buchanan JJ, Shea CH (2010) Perceptual and attentional influences on continuous 2:1 and 3:2 multi-frequency bimanual coordination. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 36: 936–954.
[50]  Ronsse R, Puttemans V, Coxon JP, Goble DJ, Wagemans J, et al. (2011) Motor learning with augmented feedback: modality-dependent behavioral and neural consequences. Cereb Cortex 21: 1283–1294.
[51]  Preilowski BFB (1972) Possible contribution of anterior forebrain commissures to blateral motor coordination. Neuropsychologia 10: 267–277.
[52]  Neilson PD, Neilson MD (2002) Anisotropic tracking: evidence for automatic synergy formation in a bimanual task. Hum Mov Sci 21: 723–748.
[53]  Oldfield RC (1971) The assessment and analysis of handedness: the Edinburgh inventory. Neuropscyhology 9: 97–113.
[54]  Haken H, Kelso JA, Bunz H (1985) A theoretical model of phase transitions in human hand movements. Biol Cybern 51: 347–356.
[55]  Wenderoth N, Van Dooren M, Vandebroek A, De Vos J, Vangheluwe S, et al. (2009) Conceptual binding: integrated visual cues reduce processing costs in bimanual movements. J Neurophysiol 102: 302–311.
[56]  Swinnen SP, Jardin K, Verschueren S, Meulenbroek R, Franz L, et al. (1998) Exploring interlimb constraints during bimanual graphic performance: effects of muscle grouping and direction. Behav Brain Res 90: 79–87.
[57]  Serrien DJ, Swinnen SP (1998) Interactive processes during interlimb coordination: combining movement patterns with different frequency ratios. Psychol Res 61: 191–203.
[58]  Levin O, Suy E, Huybrechts J, Vangheluwe S, Swinnen SP (2004) Bimanual coordination involving homologous and heterologous joint combinations: when lower stability is associated with higher flexibility. Behav Brain Res 152: 437–445.
[59]  de Poel HJ, Peper CL, Beek PJ (2007) Handedness-related asymmetry in coupling strength in bimanual coordination: furthering theory and evidence. Acta Psychol (Amst) 124: 209–237.
[60]  Zanone PG, Kelso JA (1992) Evolution of behavioral attractors with learning: nonequilibrium phase transitions. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 18: 403–421.
[61]  Ivry RB, Spencer RM, Zelaznik HN, Diedrichsen J (2002) The cerebellum and event timing. Ann N Y Acad Sci 978: 302–317.
[62]  Peters M (1994) Does handedness play a role in the coordination of bimanual movement. In: Swinnen SP, Heuer H, Massion J, Casaer P, editors. Interlimb coordination: Neural, dynamical, and cognitive constraints. San Diego: Academic Press. pp. 595–612.
[63]  Franz EA, Rowse A, Ballantine B (2002) Does handedness determine which hand leads in a bimanual task? J Mot Behav 34: 402–412.
[64]  Serrien DJ (2008) Coordination constraints during bimanual versus unimanual performance conditions. Neuropsychologia 46: 419–425.
[65]  Maslovat D, Chus R, Lee TD, Franks IM (2004) Contextual interference: single task versus multi-task learning. Motor Control 8: 213–233.
[66]  Bingham GP, Schmidt RC, Zaal FT (1999) Visual perception of the relative phasing of human limb movements. Percept Psychophys 61: 246–258.
[67]  Kurtz S, Lee TD (2003) Part and whole perceptual-motor practice of a polyrhythm. Neurosci Lett 338: 205–208.
[68]  Salmoni AW, Ross D, Dilbs S, Zoellerb M (1983) Knowledge of results and perceptual-motor learning. Hum Mov Sci 2: 77–89.
[69]  Verschueren SM, Swinnen SP, Dom R, De Weerdt W (1997) Interlimb coordination in patients with Parkinson's disease: motor learning deficits and the importance of augmented information feedback. Exp Brain Res 113: 497–508.
[70]  Proteau L (1992) On the specificity of learning and the role of visual information for movement control. In: Proteau L, Elliott D, editors. Vision and motor control. Amsterdam.
[71]  van der Wel RP, Rosenbaum DA (2010) Bimanual grasp planning reflects changing rather than fixed constraint dominance. Exp Brain Res 205: 351–362.
[72]  Rosenbaum DA, Loukopoulos LD, Meulenbroek RG, Vaughan J, Engelbrecht SE (1995) Planning reaches by evaluating stored postures. Psychol Rev 102: 28–67.
[73]  Rosenbaum DA, Meulenbroek RG, Vaughan J (2001) Planning reaching and grasping movements: theoretical premises and practical implications. Motor Control 5: 99–115.


comments powered by Disqus