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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Journal of neurophysiology, October 2010, Vol.104(4), pp.1969-77
    Description: We investigated age-related changes in adaptation and sensory reintegration in postural control without vision. In two sessions, participants adapted their posture to sway reference and to reverse sway reference conditions, the former reducing (near eliminating) and the latter enhancing (near doubling) proprioceptive information for posture by means of support-surface rotations in proportion to body sway. Participants stood on a stable platform for 3 min (baseline) followed by 18 min of sway reference or reverse sway reference (adaptation) and finally again on a stable platform for 3 min (reintegration). Results showed that when inaccurate proprioception was introduced, anterior-posterior (AP) sway path length increased in comparable levels in the two age groups. During adaptation, young and older adults reduced postural sway at the same rate. On restoration of the stable platform in the reintegration phase, a sizeable aftereffect of increased AP path length was observed in both groups, which was greater in magnitude and duration for older adults. In line with linear feedback models of postural control, spectral analyses showed that this aftereffect differed between the two platform conditions. In the sway-referenced condition, a switch from low- to high-frequency COP sway marked the transition from reduced to normal proprioceptive information. The opposite switch was observed in the reverse sway referenced condition. Our findings illustrate age-related slowing in participants' postural control adjustments to sudden changes in environmental conditions. Over and above differences in postural control, our results implicate sensory reweighting as a specific mechanism highly sensitive to age-related decline.
    Keywords: Adaptation, Physiological -- Physiology ; Aging -- Physiology ; Posture -- Physiology ; Proprioception -- Physiology ; Sensory Deprivation -- Physiology ; Vision, Ocular -- Physiology
    ISSN: 00223077
    E-ISSN: 1522-1598
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  • 2
    In: Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences, 2015, Vol. 70(3), pp.377-385
    Description: Objectives. Multitasking is a challenging aspect of human behavior, especially if the concurrently performed tasks are different in nature. Several studies demonstrated pronounced performance decrements (dual-task costs) in older adults for combinations of cognitive and motor tasks. However, patterns of costs among component tasks differed across studies and reasons for participants' resource allocation strategies remained elusive. Method. We investigated young and older adults' multitasking of a working memory task and two sensorimotor tasks, one with low (finger force control) and one with high ecological relevance (postural control). The tasks were performed in single-, dual-, and triple-task contexts. Results. Working memory accuracy was reduced in dual-task contexts with either sensorimotor task and deteriorated further under triple-task conditions. Postural and force performance deteriorated with age and task difficulty in dual- task contexts. However, in the triple-task context with its maximum resource demands, older adults prioritized postural control over both force control and memory. Discussion. Our results identify ecological relevance as the key factor in older adults' multitasking. Key Words: Aging--Dual tasking--Multitasking--Postural control--Sensorimotor control--Working memory. doi: 10.1093/geronb/gbt105.
    Keywords: Aging ; Dual Tasking ; Multitasking ; Postural Control ; Sensorimotor Control ; Working Memory.
    ISSN: 1079-5014
    E-ISSN: 1758-5368
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  • 3
    Language: English
    In: Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 2012, Vol.38(4), pp.817-821
    Description: We conducted a haptic search experiment to investigate the influence of the Gestalt principles of proximity, similarity, and good continuation. We expected faster search when the distractors could be grouped. We chose edges at different orientations as stimuli because they are processed similarly in the haptic and visual modality. We therefore expected the principles of similarity and good continuation to be operational in haptics as they are in vision. In contrast, because of differences in spatial processing between vision and haptics, we expected differences for the principle of proximity. In haptics, the Gestalt principle of proximity could operate at two distinct levels—somatotopic proximity or spatial proximity—and we assessed both possibilities in our experiments. The results show that the principles of similarity and good continuation indeed operate in this haptic search task. Neither of our proximity manipulations yielded effects, which may suggest that grouping by proximity must take place before an invariant representation of the object has formed.
    Keywords: Gestalt Principles ; Perceptual Grouping ; Haptic Search ; Touch ; Haptics
    ISSN: 0096-1523
    E-ISSN: 1939-1277
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  • 4
    Language: English
    In: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 2018, Vol.166, pp.567-0965
    Description: We investigated the influence of image mediation (the process that translates tactile information into a visual image) on the development of haptic two-dimensional (2D) shape identification in 78 participants from five different age groups: preschoolers (4–5 years), first graders (6–7 years), fifth graders (10–11 years), young adolescents (12–13 years), and young adults (18–28 years). Participants attempted to haptically recognize everyday objects (three-dimensional [3D] haptic condition) and tangible line drawings (2D haptic condition) and to recognize objects presented through a serial visual “peek hole” version of the haptic line drawing task (2D visual condition). All groups were excellent at 3D haptic identification. However, preschoolers and first graders scored low in both visual and haptic line drawing tasks. From fifth grade onward, participants were reliably better at the visual peek hole task compared with the haptic line drawing task, which improved only gradually in young adolescent and adult age groups. We argue that both the spatial reference frame and working memory capacity constrain image mediation and children's increasing abilities to correctly haptically identify 2D shapes.
    Keywords: Children ; Development ; Haptic Perception ; Image Mediation ; Proprioception ; Touch ; Working Memory ; Experimental And Cognitive Psychology ; Developmental And Educational Psychology
    ISSN: 0022-0965
    Source: NARCIS (National Academic Research and Collaborations Information System)
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  • 5
    Language: English
    In: Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, February 2018, Vol.166, pp.567-580
    Description: We investigated the influence of image mediation (the process that translates tactile information into a visual image) on the development of haptic two-dimensional (2D) shape identification in 78 participants from five different age groups: preschoolers (4–5 years), first graders (6–7 years), fifth graders (10–11 years), young adolescents (12–13 years), and young adults (18–28 years). Participants attempted to haptically recognize everyday objects (three-dimensional [3D] haptic condition) and tangible line drawings (2D haptic condition) and to recognize objects presented through a serial visual “peek hole” version of the haptic line drawing task (2D visual condition). All groups were excellent at 3D haptic identification. However, preschoolers and first graders scored low in both visual and haptic line drawing tasks. From fifth grade onward, participants were reliably better at the visual peek hole task compared with the haptic line drawing task, which improved only gradually in young adolescent and adult age groups. We argue that both the spatial reference frame and working memory capacity constrain image mediation and children’s increasing abilities to correctly haptically identify 2D shapes.
    Keywords: Haptic Perception ; Development ; Children ; Touch ; Proprioception ; Image Mediation ; Working Memory ; Social Welfare & Social Work ; Psychology
    ISSN: 0022-0965
    E-ISSN: 1096-0457
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: Psychology and Aging, 2010, Vol.25(4), pp.980-990
    Description: We investigated adult age-differences in timing control of fast vs. slow repetitive movements using a dual-task approach. Twenty-two young ( M = 24.23 yr) and 22 older adults ( M = 66.64 yr) performed three cognitive tasks differing in working memory load and response production demands and they tapped series of 550-ms or 2100-ms target intervals. Single-task timing was comparable in both groups. Dual-task timing was characterized by shortening of produced intervals and increases in drift and variability. Dual-task costs for both cognitive and timing performances were pronounced at slower tapping tempos, an effect exacerbated in older adults. Our findings implicate attention and working memory processes as critical components of slow movement timing and sources of specific challenges thereof for older adults.
    Keywords: Dual-Task ; Finger Tapping ; Variability ; Attention ; Working Memory
    ISSN: 0882-7974
    E-ISSN: 1939-1498
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  • 7
    Language: English
    In: PLoS ONE, 01 January 2013, Vol.8(6), p.e65412
    Description: We investigated the applicability of the Gestalt principle of perceptual grouping by proximity in the haptic modality. To do so, we investigated the influence of element proximity on haptic contour detection. In the course of four sessions ten participants performed a haptic contour detection task in which they freely explored a haptic random dot display that contained a contour in 50% of the trials. A contour was defined by a higher density of elements (raised dots), relative to the background surface. Proximity of the contour elements as well as the average proximity of background elements was systematically varied. We hypothesized that if proximity of contour elements influences haptic contour detection, detection will be more likely when contour elements are in closer proximity. This should be irrespective of the ratio with the proximity of the background elements. Results showed indeed that the closer the contour elements were, the higher the detection rates. Moreover, this was the case independent of the contour/background ratio. We conclude that the Gestalt law of proximity applies to haptic contour detection.
    Keywords: Sciences (General)
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 8
    Language: English
    In: Gait & Posture, 2011, Vol.33(3), pp.401-405
    Description: We investigated dual-task performance of cognitive (semantic fluency) and sensorimotor tasks (walking) in 120 children and adults from four age groups (9-year olds, = 9.52 years; 11-year olds, = 11.51 years; young adults, = 25.34 years; older adults, = 64.28 years; = 30 per group). Distances walked during 90 s and numbers of category exemplars generated in the semantic fluency task showed an inverted U-shape function with age. In line with general resource models proportional dual-task costs in walking also showed a U-shaped relation as a function of age with pronounced decrements in the youngest and oldest groups. Only 9-year olds showed significant costs in the cognitive task. Individual differences in single-task performance accounted for more than half of the variance in dual-task performance. Reliable age-related residual variance implicated additional factors particularly in children's developing multi-tasking performances.
    Keywords: Dual-Task ; Lifespan ; Semantic Fluency ; Cognitive Resources ; Medicine ; Anatomy & Physiology
    ISSN: 0966-6362
    E-ISSN: 1879-2219
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  • 9
    Language: English
    In: Neuropsychology, 2012, Vol.26(1), pp.110-118
    Description: Objective: Previous studies with patients diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) revealed deficits in working memory and executive functions. In the present study we investigated whether patients with MDD have the ability to allocate cognitive resources in dual task performance of a highly challenging cognitive task (working memory) and a task that is seemingly automatic in nature (postural control). Method: Fifteen young (18–35 years old) patients with MDD and 24 healthy age-matched controls performed a working memory task and two postural control tasks (standing on a stable or on a moving platform) both separately (single task) and concurrently (dual task). Results: Postural stability under single task conditions was similar in the two groups, and in line with earlier studies, MDD patients recalled fewer working memory items than controls. To equate working memory challenges for patients and controls, task difficulty (number of items presented) in dual task was individually adjusted such that accuracy of working memory performance was similar for the two groups under single task conditions. Patients showed greater postural instability in dual task performance on the stable platform, and more importantly when posture task difficulty increased (moving platform) they showed deficits in both working memory accuracy and postural stability compared with healthy controls. Conclusions: We interpret our results as evidence for executive control deficits in MDD patients that affect their task coordination. In multitasking, these deficits affect not only cognitive but also sensorimotor task performance.
    Keywords: Major Depressive Disorder ; Working Memory ; Executive Function ; Postural Control ; Dual Task
    ISSN: 0894-4105
    E-ISSN: 1931-1559
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  • 10
    Language: English
    In: Developmental Psychology, 2008, Vol.44(3), pp.747-757
    Description: Task prioritization can lead to trade-off patterns in dual-task situations. The authors compared dual-task performances in 9- and 11-year-old children and young adults performing a cognitive task and a motor task concurrently. The motor task required balancing on an ankle-disc board. Two cognitive tasks measured working memory and episodic memory at difficulty levels individually adjusted during the course of extensive training. Adults showed performance decrements in both task domains under dual-task conditions. In contrast, children showed decrements only in the cognitive tasks but actually swayed less under dual-task than under single-task conditions and continued to reduce their body sway even when instructed to focus on the cognitive task. The authors argue that children perform closer to their stability boundaries in the balance task and therefore prioritize protection of their balance under dual-task conditions.
    Keywords: Dual Task ; Children ; Young Adults ; Postural Stability ; Task Prioritization
    ISSN: 0012-1649
    E-ISSN: 1939-0599
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