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“School of Cognitive Sciences”

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Paper   IPM / Cognitive Sciences / 7898
School of Cognitive Sciences
  Title:   Kinesthetic Memory in Distance Reproduction Task: Importance of Initial Hand Position Information
1.  M.A. Khoshoodi
2.  R. Motiei Langroudi
3.  M. Omrani
4.  F. Ghaderi Pakdel
5.  A. Abbasian
  Status:   Published
  Journal: Experimental Brain Research
  No.:  5
  Vol.:  97
  Year:  2005
  Pages:   276-281
  Supported by:  IPM
The role of the initial hand position in planning and implementation of a goal directed movement is a matter of debate. We designed a non-visually guided repetitive reaching movement task to investigate the role of proprioceptive information of the initial or end hand position in implementation of kinesthetic memory. The experimental design consisted of 4 experiments. Each experiment consisted of two phases: the training phase and the test phase. In the training phase the subjects were asked to learn and memorize the distance between start and end points by moving their hands 10 times between them. In the test phase, the end point was removed, and starting from the same initial position, the subjects were asked to reproduce the memorized distance. In all experiments, varied conditions called ?mask phase? preceded the test phase: a 5sec delay in experiment 1, shifting both initial and end point while keeping the distance constant in experiment 2, shifting only the end point, while keeping the initial point constant in experiment 3, shifting only the initial point and keeping the end point constant in experiment 4. In comparison to experiment 1 (which was considered as the control group), no significant error in distance reproduction occurred in experiment 3, while experiments 2 and 4 showed significant error. These finding mean that although the distance information was available during the mask phase of experiment 2, subjects could not efficiently use this information to reproduce the distance. The other two experiments suggest that this error was caused by changing the initial hand position and not the end point. We conclude that in a kinesthetic guided distance reproduction task, the initial hand position is more important for implementation of distance memory rather than end point.
Key words: initial hand position, kinesthetic memory, motor planning, proprioception.

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