Movement sonification: Effects on motor learning beyond rhythmic adjustments

Alfred O. Effenberg, U. Fehse, Gerd Schmitz, Björn Krüger und H. Mechling
In: Frontiers in Neuroscience (Mai 2016), 10:219
 

Abstract

Motor learning is based on motor perception and emergent perceptual-motor representations. A lot of behavioral research is related to single perceptual modalities, but during last two decades the contribution of multimodal perception on motor behavior was discovered more and more. A growing number of studies indicate an enhanced impact of multimodal stimuli on motor perception, motor control and motor learning in terms of better precision and higher reliability of the related actions. Behavioral research is supported by neurophysiological data, revealing that multisensory integration supports motor control and learning. But the overwhelming part of both research lines is dedicated to basic research. Besides research in the domains of music, dance and motor rehabilitation there is nearly no evidence about enhanced effectiveness of multisensory information on learning of gross motor skills. To reduce this gap movement sonification is used here in applied research on motor learning in sports. Based on the current knowledge on the multimodal organization of the perceptual system we generate additional real-time movement information being suitable for integration with perceptual feedback streams of visual and proprioceptive modality. With ongoing training synchronously processed auditory information should be initially integrated into the emerging internal models, enhancing the efficacy of motor learning. This is achieved by a direct mapping of kinematic and dynamic motion parameters to electronic sounds, resulting in continuous auditory and convergent audiovisual or audio-proprioceptive stimulus arrays. In sharp contrast to other approaches using acoustic information as error feedback in motor learning settings we try to generate additional movement information suitable for acceleration and enhancement of adequate sensorimotor representations and processible below the level of consciousness. In the experimental setting participants were asked to learn a closed motor skill (technique acquisition of indoor rowing). One group was treated with visual information and two groups with audiovisual information (sonification vs. natural sounds). For all three groups learning became evident and remained stable. Participants treated with additional movement sonification showed better performance compared to both other groups. Results indicate that movement sonification enhances motor learning of a complex gross motor skill – even exceeding usually expected acoustic rhythmical effects on motor learning.

Stichwörter: Audiovisual information, motor learning, Motor perception, movement sonification, multisensory integration

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Bibtex

@ARTICLE{effenberg2016,
    author = {Effenberg, Alfred O. and Fehse, U. and Schmitz, Gerd and Kr{\"u}ger, Bj{\"o}rn and Mechling, H.},
     title = {Movement sonification: Effects on motor learning beyond rhythmic adjustments},
   journal = {Frontiers in Neuroscience},
    volume = {10},
    number = {219},
      year = {2016},
     month = may,
  keywords = {Audiovisual information, motor learning, Motor perception, movement sonification, multisensory
              integration},
  abstract = {Motor learning is based on motor perception and emergent perceptual-motor representations. A lot of
              behavioral research is related to single perceptual modalities, but during last two decades the
              contribution of multimodal perception on motor behavior was discovered more and more. A growing
              number of studies indicate an enhanced impact of multimodal stimuli on motor perception, motor
              control and motor learning in terms of better precision and higher reliability of the related
              actions. Behavioral research is supported by neurophysiological data, revealing that multisensory
              integration supports motor control and learning. But the overwhelming part of both research lines is
              dedicated to basic research. Besides research in the domains of music, dance and motor
              rehabilitation there is nearly no evidence about enhanced effectiveness of multisensory information
              on learning of gross motor skills. To reduce this gap movement sonification is used here in applied
              research on motor learning in sports.
              Based on the current knowledge on the multimodal organization of the perceptual system we generate
              additional real-time movement information being suitable for integration with perceptual feedback
              streams of visual and proprioceptive modality. With ongoing training synchronously processed
              auditory information should be initially integrated into the emerging internal models, enhancing the
              efficacy of motor learning. This is achieved by a direct mapping of kinematic and dynamic motion
              parameters to electronic sounds, resulting in continuous auditory and convergent audiovisual or
              audio-proprioceptive stimulus arrays. In sharp contrast to other approaches using acoustic
              information as error feedback in motor learning settings we try to generate additional movement
              information suitable for acceleration and enhancement of adequate sensorimotor representations and
              processible below the level of consciousness. 
              In the experimental setting participants were asked to learn a closed motor skill (technique
              acquisition of indoor rowing). One group was treated with visual information and two groups with
              audiovisual information (sonification vs. natural sounds). For all three groups learning became
              evident and remained stable. Participants treated with additional movement sonification showed
              better performance compared to both other groups. Results indicate that movement sonification
              enhances motor learning of a complex gross motor skill – even exceeding usually expected acoustic
              rhythmical effects on motor learning.},
       url = {http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fnins.2016.00219/abstract},
       doi = {10.3389/fnins.2016.00219}
}