Navigation Links
Practice makes perfect if you have a partner's touch, according to new study
Date:1/23/2014

People improve their performance more when they practise with a partner rather than on their own, according to a new study.

The research could ultimately help people rehabilitating from a stroke.

Scientists from Imperial College London and two Japanese institutions explored whether physical interaction improved the way people performed in a computer-based task where they were using a joystick-like device. They were connected by a virtual elastic band to the same type of device operated by another person, who was hidden from view.

Most of the participants were unaware that they were working with a partner, but in spite of this they subconsciously used information transmitted through their partner's touch to enhance their performance. Participants achieved noticeably better results in the task when working with a partner than they did working on their own.

The researchers are particularly interested in how their findings could help people performing exercises for rehabilitation, for example when recovering from stroke. Robots are increasingly used for such rehabilitation and physiotherapy and the researchers believe that these robots would be more effective if they could react to patients through touch in the same way that people do. The research could also help people practising sports or other physical activities.

Dr Etienne Burdet, co-author of the study from the Department of Bioengineering at Imperial College London, said: "They say it takes two to tango and it seems that for physical tasks, practising with a partner really does improve performance. Our study is helping us to understand how touch plays a vital and very subtle role in helping people to transmit information to one another. This was the case in our study even when people couldn't see their partner or feel their partner's skin."

In the study, the researchers discovered that where one person was physically connected to a partner when learning a task, they consistently improved their performance regardless of how well their partner performed.

Even an intermittent physical connection between partners was found by the researchers to help individuals to learn the task better than subjects who practised the task alone for the same duration.

The team also found that when practising a task, the improvement in performance was most prominent when the partners were at a similar level, and that interacting with peers was more beneficial than working with an expert.

Improvements were most noticeable when the individual was practising with another human and not a robot.

Atsushi Takagi, PhD student and co-author of the study from the Department of Bioengineering at Imperial College London, said: "Humans are intensely social creatures and it is no surprise that we've developed non-verbal communication techniques to help us improve the way we carry out tasks. Touch is an essential tool in our communication arsenal. It's fascinating that this kind of communication can be so powerful even when people can't see each other. Excitingly, getting robotic devices to mimic this process could help people make bigger improvements when they are carrying out exercises in rehabilitation."

The team reached their conclusions by carrying out experimental sessions with 68 volunteers who operated a joystick-like robotic device to move a cursor, in an effort to track a randomly moving target on a screen.

Each session consisted of an equal number of single and dual trials. In the single trials each individual performed the tracking alone, while in the dual trials the candidates were connected by a virtual elastic band that connected the hands of the partners during the trial. The sequence of the trials was pre-determined and unknown to the subjects and most of the volunteers did not deduce that they were connected to a partner. Although they could feel the force of their partner during the trial, they were still able to make independent movements.


'/>"/>
Contact: Colin Smith
cd.smith@imperial.ac.uk
44-020-759-46712
Imperial College London
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Cainkade Launches New Digital Health Practice
2. Miami Therapeutic Private Practice Blue Pearl Therapeutic, PA to Begin Seminars on Sex and Intimacy for Couples Including Seminars Catered to the LGBT Community
3. Gabriel Pediatrics, A NY-Based Comprehensive Pediatric Care Practice, Responds to the United States’ Treatment of Pediatric AIDS
4. Get Your Practice To A Flying Start In 2014 With These Simple Marketing Tips
5. Uninsured Infertility Patients Get Access to Affordable IVF Care Through WINFertility® - Program Expands with Prestigious Fertility Practices Covering the Carolinas
6. Cerebral Palsy and Medical Malpractice Lawyers: Resource4thePeople Announces Complimentary Consultations Will Be Available over the Holidays
7. Surgeon Introduces FDA-approved MENTOR® MemoryShape™ Breast Implants to El Paso Area Cosmetic Surgery Practice
8. Zephyr-TEC Simplifies Integration of Dragon Medical Practice Edition 2 and Creates Complete Dictation System Solutions for Physicians
9. Register for Merrill DataSite's Webinar Playback: Best Practices for Strategic Growth: Where to Invest in the Maturing U.S. Economy
10. Speech Recognition Solutions, LLC Launches New Website That Sets New Standard in Technical Support for Dragon Medical Practice Edition 2
11. Despite rising health costs, few residency programs train doctors to practice cost-conscious care
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/27/2016)... , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... mental health professionals, announced today its affiliation with Tennessee Counseling Association. ... to the network of the Tennessee Counseling Association, adding exclusive benefits and promotional ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... , ... June 26, 2016 , ... On June 10-11, ... of the 2016 Cereal Festival and World’s Longest Breakfast Table in Battle Creek, MI, ... the city’s history as home to some of the world’s leading providers of cereal ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Experts from the American Institutes ... Research Meeting June 26-28, 2016, at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. , ... advance care planning, healthcare costs and patient and family engagement. , AIR researchers ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 2016 , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, Dr. Omkar Marathe earned his ... David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained in Internal Medicine at Scripps ... in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where he had the opportunity to ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Those who have ... these feelings, many turn to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or alcohol abuse, as ... Michigan, has released tools for healthy coping following a traumatic event. , Trauma sufferers ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/26/2016)... 27, 2016 Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc (Nasdaq: ... the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976, as amended ... Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ("Celator"; Nasdaq: CPXX ) expired ... Time). As previously announced on May 31, ... merger agreement under which Jazz Pharmaceuticals has commenced a ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Consumers have ... and regulators/payers have placed more emphasis on patient ... patient support programs in the pharmaceutical industry have ... medications. Consequently, pharmaceutical companies are focusing on becoming ... are providing products and services that improve health. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)...   Bay Area Lyme Foundation , collaborating ... for Tick Borne Illness , Harvard Medical School ... Medicine, University of California, Berkeley, and the Veterans ... finalists of Lyme Innovation , the first ... scientists, clinicians, researchers, entrepreneurs, and investors from several ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: