The movement-specific effect of motor imagery on the premotor time

Sheng Li*, Jennifer A. Stevens, Derek G. Kamper, William Z. Rymer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of motor imagery on the premotor time (PMT). Twelve healthy adults performed reaction time movements in response to external visual signals at rest, when holding an object (muscle activation), or performing different background imagined movements (motor imagery). When compared to rest, muscle activation reduced the PMT; imagined finger extension of the right hand and imagined finger flexion of the left hand elongated the PMT; imagined finger flexion of the right hand had no effect on the PMT. This movement-specific effect is interpreted as the sum of the excitatory effect caused by enhanced corticospinal excitability specifically for the primary mover of the imagined movement and an overall inhibition associated with increased task complexity during motor imagery. Our results clearly demonstrate that motor imagery has movement-specific effects on the PMT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)119-128
Number of pages10
JournalMotor control
Volume9
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2005

Keywords

  • Finger
  • Human
  • Motor imagery
  • Premotor time
  • Reaction time

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)

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