We must frequently adapt our movements in order to successfully perform motor tasks. These visuomotor adaptations can occur with or without our awareness and so, have generally been described by two mechanisms: strategic control and spatial realignment. Strategic control is a conscious modification used when discordance between an intended and actual movement is observed. Spatial realignment is an unconscious recalibration in response to subtle differences between an intended and efferent movement. Traditional methods of investigating visuomotor adaptation often involve simplistic, repetitive motor goals and so may be vulnerable to subject boredom or expectation. Our laboratory has recently developed a novel, engaging computer-based task, the Viewing Window, to investigate visuomotor adaptation to large, apparent distortions. Here, we contrast behavioural measures of visuomotor adaptation during the Viewing Window task when either gradual progressive rotations or large, sudden rotations are introduced in order to demonstrate that this paradigm can be utilized to investigate both strategic control and spatial realignment. The gradual rotation group demonstrated significantly faster mean velocities and spent significantly less time off the object compared to the sudden rotation group. These differences demonstrate adaptation to the distortion using spatial realignment. Scan paths revealed greater after-effects in the gradual rotation group reflected by greater time spent scanning areas off of the object. These results demonstrate the ability to investigate both strategic control and spatial realignment. Thus, the Viewing Window provides a powerful engaging tool for investigating the neural basis of visuomotor adaptation and impairment following injury and disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)