How the mind senses movement

Posted on February 8, 2006 

How the mind senses movement

Lifting a finger is easy. What is far more difficult is understanding how our brains sense that it has moved.

For over a century scientists have struggled to understand which parts of the nervous system allow the body to sense its own position in space. Now Simon Gandevia of the Prince of Wales Medical Research Institute in Sydney, Australia, and colleagues have devised a technique which clearly demonstrates that the brain only has to send a command to a limb to create the sensation of movement.

Their discovery goes some way to resolving the enigma of whether motor commands or receptors in the skin, joints and muscles are more important for creating a feeling of movement.


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