Inferring online and offline processing of visual feedback in target-directed movements from kinematic data
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Vision plays an important role in the planning and execution of target-directed aiming movements. In this review, we highlight the limitations that exist in detecting visual regulation of limb trajectories from traditional kinematic analyses such as the identification of discontinuities in velocity and acceleration. Alternative kinematic analyses that involve examining variability in limb trajectories to infer visual control processes are evaluated. The basic assumption underlying these methods is that noise exists in the neuromotor system that subsequently leads to variability in motor output. This leads to systematic relations in limb trajectory variability at different stages of the movement that are altered when trajectories are modified during movement execution. Hence, by examining the variability in limb trajectories and correlations of kinematic variables throughout movement for vision and no vision conditions, the contribution of visual feedback in the planning and control of movement can be determined.
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