Independent learning of internal models for kinematic and dynamic control of reaching

Nat Neurosci. 1999 Nov;2(11):1026-31. doi: 10.1038/14826.


Psychophysical studies of reaching movements suggest that hand kinematics are learned from errors in extent and direction in an extrinsic coordinate system, whereas dynamics are learned from proprioceptive errors in an intrinsic coordinate system. We examined consolidation and interference to determine if these two forms of learning were independent. Learning and consolidation of two novel transformations, a rotated spatial reference frame and altered intersegmental dynamics, did not interfere with each other and consolidated in parallel. Thus separate kinematic and dynamic models were constructed simultaneously based on errors computed in different coordinate frames, and possibly, in different sensory modalities, using separate working-memory systems. These results suggest that computational approaches to motor learning should include two separate performance errors rather than one.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Feedback
  • Female
  • Hand / innervation*
  • Hand Strength / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Kinesthesis
  • Learning / physiology*
  • Male
  • Models, Neurological*
  • Movement / physiology*
  • Rotation