A method for reconstructing joint compliant characteristics during voluntary movements was applied to the analysis of oscillatory and unidirectional elbow flexion movements. In different series, the subjects were given one of the following instructions: (1) do not intervene voluntarily; (2) keep the trajectory; (3) in cases of perturbations, return back to the starting position as quickly as possible (only during unidirectional movements). Under the instruction 'keep trajectory', the apparent joint stiffness increased by 50% to 250%. During oscillatory movements, this was accompanied by a decrease in the maximal difference between the actual and equilibrium joint trajectories and, in several cases, led to a change in the phase relation between the two trajectories. The coefficients of correlation between joint torque and angle were very high (commonly, over 0.9) under the 'do not intervene' instruction. They dropped to about 0.6 under the 'keep trajectory' and to about 0.3 under the 'return back' instructions. Under these two instructions, the low values of the coefficients of correlation did not allow reconstruction of segments of equilibrium trajectories and joint stiffness values in all the subjects. The results provide further support for the λ-version of the equilibrium-point hypothesis and for using the instruction 'do not intervene voluntarily' to obtain reproducible time patterns of the central motor command.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Computer Science(all)