View Full Version : replies on coordination

Jan-paul Van Wingerden
11-16-1994, 08:32 PM
Dear BIOMCH-L readers,

Thanks for the quick, informative and helpful replies to
my question concerning coordination.
Following is a summary of the replies:
Pascal van Lieshout suggested:

Hulstijn, W., Van Lieshout, P.H.H.M., & Peters, H.F.M.
(1991). On the measurement of coordination. In H.F.M.
Peters, W. Hulstijn, & C.W. Starkweather. Speech Motor
Control and Stuttering. Amsterdam: Excerpta Medica.

while Ken Holt, R Carson and Robin Burgess-Limerick recommended:

Turvey, M.T. (1990). Coordination. American Psychologist, 45(8), 938-

I got the article and it sure is helpful with good information.


The most direct food for thought however came from Robin Burgess:

An interesting question. I think some of your problem stems from the
notion that the neural system "causes" coordination of the body.
Rather, the neural system can be thought of as part of the larger
physical system which includes the musculoskeletal components. The
patterns of movement observed are a consequence of the interaction
between neural and musculoskeletal subsystems, rather than caused by
neural activity. Coordination then encompasses this interaction, as
well as that which occurs between elements of the musculoskeletal

'************************************************* ******
My conclusion for the moment is that coordination does not refer to
the quality of the motion (how well it is performed), but that it has
to do with how well it is steered, both musculoskeletal and neural.
Therefore it is possible that distortion of the coordination is
caused by the muscluskeletal component or/and by the neural component.

If we say: "the motion is (well) coordinated" it means the motion is
well controlled, it does not consequently mean the motion "looks"
right. However we can assume that a coordinated motion follows the
right motion pattern, and when the motion is not well coordinated the
followed motion pattern can be expected to deviate from the "normal"
motion pattern.

With kind regards,
Jan-Paul van Wingerden
Dept. of Anatomy
Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam