Modulating the Structure of Motor Variability for Skill Learning Through Specific Muscle Synergies in Elderlies and Young Adults

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-40
Journal / PublicationIEEE Open Journal of Engineering in Medicine and Biology
Volume1
Online published3 Jan 2020
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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Abstract

Objective: Motor variability - performance variations across task repetitions - has been assumed to be undesirable. But recent studies argue that variability facilitates early motor learning by allowing exploratory search of reward-generating motion, and that variability's structure may be modulated by neural circuits for furthering learning. What are the neural sources of learning-relevant motor variability and its modulation in humans of different ages? Methods: Elderlies and young adults played a 3-session virtual bowling while multi-muscle electromyographic signals were collected. We quantified trial-to-trial variability of muscle synergies - neuromotor control modules - and of their activations. Results: In elderlies, bowling-score gain correlated with change of activation timing variability of specific synergies, but in young adults, with variability changes of synergy-activation magnitude, and of the synergies themselves. Conclusions: Variability modulation of specific muscle synergies and their activations contribute to early motor learning. Elderly and young individuals may rely on different aspects of motor variability to drive learning.

Research Area(s)

  • Ageing, EMG, Motor Learning, Motor Variability, Muscle Synergy, MATRIX FACTORIZATION ALGORITHMS, SIGNAL-DEPENDENT NOISE, STRENGTH, AGE

Citation Format(s)

Modulating the Structure of Motor Variability for Skill Learning Through Specific Muscle Synergies in Elderlies and Young Adults. / CHEUNG, Vincent C. K.; ZHENG, Xiao-Chang; CHEUNG, Roy T. H.; CHAN, Rosa H. M.

In: IEEE Open Journal of Engineering in Medicine and Biology, Vol. 1, 2020, p. 33-40.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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