Examining the equivalence between imagery and execution – do imagined and executed movements code relative environmental features?

Roberts, James W. and Welsh, Timothy N. and Wakefield, Caroline (2019) Examining the equivalence between imagery and execution – do imagined and executed movements code relative environmental features? Behavioural Brain Research. ISSN 0166-4328 (Accepted for Publication)

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Abstract

Imagined actions engage some of the same neural substrates and related sensorimotor codes as executed actions. The equivalency between imagined and executed actions has been frequently demonstrated by the mental and physical chronometry of movements; namely, the imagination and execution of aiming movements in a Fitts paradigm. The present study aimed to examine the nature or extent of this equivalence, and more specifically, whether imagined movements encompass the relative environmental features as do executed movements. In two separate studies, participants completed a series of imagined or executed reciprocal aiming movements between standard control targets (no annuli), perceptually small targets (large annuli) and perceptually large targets (small annuli) (Ebbinghaus illusions). The findings of both studies replicated the standard positive relation between movement time and index of difficulty for imagined and executed movements. Furthermore, movement times were longer for targets with surrounding annuli compared to the movement times without the annuli suggesting a general interference effect. Hence, the surrounding annuli caused a longer time, independent of the illusory target size, most likely to avoid a potential collision and more precisely locate the endpoint. Most importantly, this feature could not be discriminated as a function of the task (imagined vs. executed). These findings lend support to the view of a common domain for imagined and executed actions, while elaborating on the precision of their equivalence.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information and Comments: NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Behavioural Brain Research. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. Once published, the final version will be available from https://www.sciencedirect.com/journal/behavioural-brain-research
Keywords: imagery; illusion; simulated movement; allocentric
Faculty / Department: Faculty of Science > School of Health Sciences
Depositing User: James Roberts
Date Deposited: 17 May 2019 09:08
Last Modified: 17 May 2019 09:08
URI: http://hira.hope.ac.uk/id/eprint/2853

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