Observation of an expert model induces a coarticulated drawing movement pattern in a single session

Maria Korman, Jason Friedman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


We tested how observation of a skilled pattern of planar movements can assist in the learning of a new motor skill, which otherwise requires rigorous long-term practice to achieve fast and smooth performance. Sixty participants performed a sequence of planar hand movements on pre-test, acquisition, post-test and 24h post-training blocks, under 1 of 4 conditions: an observation group (OG), a slowed observation group (SOG), a random motion control group (RMCG) and a double physical training control group (DPTCG). The OG and SOG observed a co-aligned expert model's right hand performing the study task intermittently throughout acquisition, RMCG observed random dots movement instead of a model. Participants in the DPTCG received extra physical practice trials instead of the visually observed trials. Kinematic analysis revealed that only in conditions with observation of an expert model there was an instant robust improvement in motor planning of the task. This step-wise improvement was not only persistent in post-training retests but was also apparently implicit and subject to further incremental improvements in movement strategy over the period of 24 hours. We suggest that observation of hand movements of an expert model coaligned with self-produced movements during training can significantly condense the time-course of ecologically relevant drawing / writing skill mastery. Current findings may contribute to optimization of motor training and rehabilitation in virtual or simulated environments.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationICVR 2019 - International Conference on Virtual Rehabilitation
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
ISBN (Electronic)9781728112855
StatePublished - Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes
Event2019 International Conference on Virtual Rehabilitation, ICVR 2019 - Tel Aviv, Israel
Duration: 21 Jul 201924 Jul 2019

Publication series

NameInternational Conference on Virtual Rehabilitation, ICVR
ISSN (Electronic)2331-9569


Conference2019 International Conference on Virtual Rehabilitation, ICVR 2019
CityTel Aviv


  • Kinematics
  • coarticulation
  • drawing
  • model observation
  • motor skill learning
  • planar movements


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