Document Detail

The point of no return in planar hand movements: an indication of the existence of high level motion primitives.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19003504     Owner:  NLM     Status:  In-Data-Review    
Previous psychophysical studies have sought to determine whether the processes of movement engagement and termination are dissociable, whether stopping an action is a generic process, and whether there is a point in time in which the generation of a planned action is inevitable ("point of no return"). It is not clear yet, however, whether the action of stopping is merely a manifestation of low level, dynamic constraints, or whether it is also subject to a high level, kinematic plan. In the present study, stopping performance was studied while nine subjects, who generated free scribbling movements looking for the location of an invisible circular target, were requested unexpectedly to impede movement. Temporal analysis of the data shows that in 87% of the movements subsequent to the 'stop' cue, the tangential motion velocity profile was not a decelerating function of the time but rather exhibited a complex pattern comprised of one or more velocity peaks, implying an unstoppable motion element. Furthermore, geometrical analysis shows that the figural properties of the path generated after the 'stop' cue were part of a repetitive geometrical pattern and that the probability of completing a pattern after the 'stop' cue was correlated with the relative advance in the geometrical plan rather than the amount of time that had elapsed from the pattern initiation. Altogether, these findings suggest that the "point of no return" phenomenon in humans may also reflect a high level kinematic plan and could serve as a new operative definition of motion primitives.
Ronen Sosnik; Moshe Shemesh; Moshe Abeles
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article     Date:  2007-09-01
Journal Detail:
Title:  Cognitive neurodynamics     Volume:  1     ISSN:  1871-4080     ISO Abbreviation:  Cogn Neurodyn     Publication Date:  2007 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2008-11-12     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101306907     Medline TA:  Cogn Neurodyn     Country:  Netherlands    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  341-58     Citation Subset:  -    
The Gonda Brain Research Center, Bar Ilan University, Ramat Gan, 52900, Israel,
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