2019-08-22Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.18452/20759
Neuromuscular organisation and robustness of postural control in the presence of perturbations
Kultur-, Sozial- und Bildungswissenschaftliche Fakultät
Perturbation-based exercise interventions challenge balance and improve reactive motor control. Our purpose was to investigate the modular organisation during a standing balance task in both stable and unstable conditions to provide new insights into the neuromuscular control mechanisms needed to cope with perturbations. Fifteen participants performed 54 cycles of a specific task (i.e. pass from a double- to a single-leg standing) on stable ground and an unstable oscillating platform (Posturomed). Muscle synergies were extracted from the electromyographic activity of thirteen lower limb muscles. The maximum Lyapunov exponents of different body segments were calculated using kinematic data. We found two synergies functionally associated with the single- and double-leg stance in both stable and unstable conditions. Nonetheless, in the unstable condition participants needed an extra muscle synergy also functionally related to the single stance. Although a simple organisation of the neuromuscular system was sufficient to maintain the postural control in both conditions, the increased challenge in the oscillating platform was solved by adding one extra synergy. The addition of a new synergy with complementary function highlighted an increased motor output’s robustness (i.e. ability to cope with errors) in the presence of perturbations.
Files in this item
This article was supported by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the Open Access Publication Fund of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.