Organization of Compensatory Postural Coordination Patterns

Young Gyu Ko, John H. Challis, Joseph P. Stitt, Karl M. Newell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The authors investigated whether compensatory postural coordination patterns are organized according to the same dynamical principles as are nonequilibrium phase transitions. Eight participants were asked to maintain upright balance on a moving platform that was sinusoidally translated in the anterior-posterior direction and was systematically increased and decreased 0. 19 Hz as a step function every 10 platform cycles through the frequency range 0.19-1.46 Hz. At low platform frequencies, all participants exhibited small joint angular motions with high variability, and the relative phase between the joint motions exhibited drifting patterns and large fluctuations. As platform frequency increased, the amplitude of joint motion increased systematically and joint-specific oscillatory patterns emerged. The findings provided no evidence for a Hopf bifurcation or hysteresis in the transitions of postural coordination modes, however, or, more generally, a basis for distinguishing the relevance of linear versus nonlinear models of postural control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)325-342
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of motor behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biophysics
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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