Dynamic analysis of human visuo-oculo-manual coordination control in target tracking tasks

Aviat Space Environ Med. 1993 Jun;64(6):500-6.


Human subjects tracked a visual target controlled either by a function generator (sine wave at different frequencies) or directly by the observer's arm. Gain and phase curves of the oculomotor response as a function of target frequency were determined. Data show that the upper frequency limit of smooth pursuit is higher when the target is driven by the observer's hand, confirming previous reports that smooth pursuit can reach higher velocities when tracking self-moved targets. Comparative analysis of ocular tracking with and without manual target control showed that subjects could be classified into two groups. One group exhibited an increase in gain at high frequency, but showed no significant phase changes. Conversely, the reverse was found in the other group: a significant decrease of phase lag at high frequency and no change in gain. These results demonstrate the existence, within the oculo-manual coordination control system, of at least two separate mechanisms (or strategies), tending either to synchronize the eye and arm motor activities (timing coordination) or to adjust their gain (spatial coordination).

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Arm / physiology*
  • Female
  • Fourier Analysis
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Oculomotor Muscles / physiology*
  • Potentiometry
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*
  • Pursuit, Smooth / physiology*
  • Reaction Time / physiology
  • Spatial Behavior
  • Time Factors