Learning a new bimanual coordination pattern: Reciprocal influences of intrinsic and to-be-learned patterns.
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According to dynamic pattern theory, intrinsically stable bimanual coordination patterns affect, and are affected by, the acquisition of a new coordination pattern. In Experiment 1, subjects practiced either a 45 degrees or a 135 degrees relative phase pattern for 4 days; in Experiment 2, they practiced a 90 degrees relative phase pattern over 6 days. Retention tests were conducted 4 weeks after the last practice session in both experiments. Performance on both the in-phase (0 degree) and anti-phase (180 degrees) patterns was also measured on each day. Contrary to predictions, the experiments revealed that reciprocal effects between the intrinsic patterns and the new pattern were only temporary, and did not affect learning in any permanent way. As well, learning a new pattern was not differentially affected by its relation to an intrinsic pattern.
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