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48

Negative Transfer A common scientific term to describe what you are talking about is called negative transfer. I.e., where learning one skill actually results in lower performance on another skill. This is contrasted with positive transfer, when learning one skill facilitates performance on another skill. In general (although I don't have refs on hands) ...


41

I've also observed this behaviour in friends, and was curious to see what research has been done on the topic. Here's what I found (summary at the end). Sechrest and Flores (1971) study of leg-jiggling Sechrest and Flores (1971) performed an observational study of the prevalence of leg-jiggling leg jiggling was defined as a vertical, rhythmic movement ...


13

I'm not an expert in this field, but this seemed interesting enough I did some reading up on the topic. The two review papers I found quickly were Prasse & Kikano (2008) and Lawrence & Barclay (1998), both from the Journal of the American Academy of Family Physicians. I have no idea whether this is a reputable journal or not. There appear to be ...


10

Yes, there are benefits, but I don't think it requires long-term switches. Studies have used this as a manipulation to try and increase self control and have found that it decrease aggression. Based on this, once one has mastered using the non-dominant hand, it seems like the benefit of continuing to use that hand might be over (as it no longer requires ...


10

Observational points: It would be straightforward to point to a person who has mastered more than one keyboard layout (e.g., some of the people here). So, yes, it is possible. From my own personal experience, I can point to my use of both Vim keyboard shortcuts for editing and regular OSX/Windows keyboard shortcuts. This is certainly possible. But I'd ...


8

There could be a correlation between negative emotions, such as anger and hostility, and muscle strength (Tolea et al., 2012). This, however, is a post-hoc examination around the relationship between personality traits and muscle strength and may not infer that 'body strength' actually increases during anger and hostility. "In spite of the evidence for ...


6

Generally, EEG potentials are primarily averaged over trials, not electrodes. Averaging over electrodes is often done in addition to trial averaging, but this by itself does not make the potentials visible on a single-trial basis since the "noise" overshadowing the potentials is largely shared by all adjacent electrodes. The Bereitschaftspotential is also ...


6

There is a scientific literature on typing. It's been a while since I've read the articles. You might start by reading this excellent review of research and findings on transcription typing. Salthouse, 1986: Perceptual, cognitive, and motoric aspects of transcription typing. PDF General model of typing Salthouse (1986) presents a model of the typing ...


6

It's not so much a "locking" between the two hemispheres as it is a combination of an asymmetrical representation of the ipsilateral (same side) limb in cortex, and phase transitions, which bring the limbs into a more energetically favorable state. Kelso (1984) compares the phase transition to that of a racehorse, which is able to adjust its gait for the ...


6

I would hazard a guess that some type of motor system interference is taking place when you visualize the movement versus visualizing an abstract shape. For example, Kilner et al. (2003) found that actions that are observed can interfere with incongruous executed actions. They had subjects make arm movements that were either similar or dissimilar to those ...


6

Although I find the concept of flow quite interesting, I'm not so sure about needing to invoke the flow state to explain motor enhancement from unrelated continuous movements. For example, one possible explanation for why continuous motion would improve learned movements like typing is that the motor cortex is typically used to model periodic movements as a ...


6

I never thought that my Bachelor Thesis would ever come in handy. Thank you for this question! Short answer No, you cannot keep up two unrelated rhythms in a stable coordinated fashion when tapping for your finger for instance. Long Answer Let us start with (and skip over) the oldest paper that I have about it. Haken, Kelso and Bunz (1985) described in a ...


5

Short answer Muscles are controlled by motor neurons in the spinal cord. The number of motor neurons that fire, as well as their individual firing rates govern the control of muscle force. Background Muscles consist of contractile elements: the muscle fibers. These muscle fibers are under direct control of the motor neurons in the spinal cord (Purves et al.,...


5

Reward systems are one of the most actively studied topics in (cognitive) neuroscience and prediction error - that is, deviations from expected "future" reward - play a big role in that. Since you're particularly interested in models, I recommend checking out the work of Matt Botvinick and Nathaniel Daw. Here are a few papers that might be good starting ...


5

I have never heard of this formula, but from a cognitive psychology point of view you might look the theory of expert performance (Ericsson et al., 1993). In this theory it is argued that an important factor in the aquisition of expert performance is what the authors call deliberate practice. What is meant by this is an activity, wherein someone actively ...


4

It has nothing to do with perception. It's simply because there are infinitely many ways to go in circles, while only one way to go straight. Even a slightest bias towards one side will produce a circle. When other cues are given to correct the bias, one is able to track straight lines. Even robots (or toy cars) that are designed to go straight lines will ...


4

I personaly also play piano and see myself into that flow easly, Check out what I just found From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flow_(psychology) Flow is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity. In essence, ...


4

I think that this question is hard to answer because there is little known about the cerebellum, and few instances of people who have been born without one. There are only 10 known cases of complete cerebellar agenesis, which can hardly be considered a sample size. Broadly speaking, the cerebellum can be seen a 'fine tuning' device in the brain. It does not ...


4

Short answer: Not really, because a) handwriting style is generally individual-dependent and not occupation-dependent, and b) the fine-motor skills responsible for handwriting legibility are specific enough to be near-independent of the muscle control that mandates one's success in athletics and/or music. Detailed answer: It is probably difficult to say ...


4

Forgive me for not including any scientific references (I've been out of the human movement science for a while), but it is believed that movements are saved and executed in a "goal-directed" way. It is not the case that every muscle has its own area and they are individually activated on a scale of 0 (no contraction) -100 (max contraction) depending on the ...


4

Descending inputs onto the central pattern generating circuit provide stimulus in the form of neuromodulatory chemicals and synaptic currents (Marder 2012). The leech heartbeat pacemaker and the stomatogastric ganglion in crustaceans are well-studied model systems that show descending input from higher functions. Specifically, in humans, we are not sure. ...


4

Yes. In one famous experiment,a college basketball team was divided into three groups. Group 1 was supposed to show up to practice shooting baskets for a week on a daily basis. Group 2 was asked to "think about" practicing shooting baskets during the alloted time, without showing up. Group 3 was asked to "forget about" basketball for the week. After the ...


3

There was an interesting study that compared practice by imagining a movement to practice by executing ot and found an increase in strength of ~35% for imagining it, compared to ~55% for actually doing it; additionally, they found an increase in cortical potentials corresponding to the increase in strength. They concluded that mental imagery alone ...


3

Stuttering is a neuromuscular disorder. It consists of problems in sequencing and timing the movements required for the speech. The whisper is speech without vibration of the vocal cords. Since there is no vocal fold vibration, the muscles that control pitch are not active and the larynx does not need to move. This means when the PWS ( person who stutters) ...


3

There is indeed some research on handedness and user interfaces but not exactly at the level you seem to be after. Handedness matters for tablet interfaces, hand occlusion is a particular concern there. Some references: http://hal.inria.fr/hal-00670516/en and http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/summary?doi=10.1.1.89.4546 Speculating myself a little bit, I ...


3

Q: Does distraction cause us to skip to the next step in a motor plan? A: It depends on the processes in progress, characteristics of the subject and characteristics of the signal to produce interference (based on an orientation reflex that is the beginning of an act of involuntary attention), many factors, mainly: Characteristics of the process involved ...


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