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Exp Brain Res. 2008 Jul;188(4):541-50. doi: 10.1007/s00221-008-1387-8. Epub 2008 Apr 29.

Goal-related planning constraints in bimanual grasping and placing of objects.

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Action, Brain, and Cognition Lab, Department of Psychology, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand.


Our primary objective was to examine the possible interplay of the end-state comfort effect and bimanual temporal and spatial coupling constraints in a grasp-to-place task. Unimanual and bimanual grasping and placing tasks were employed with manipulations on initial comfort (by use of potentially interfering obstacles) and target goals (using various demands on end goal object orientations). Confirming previous temporal findings, incongruent bimanual tasks were considerably slower in initiation time and movement time than congruent ones, reflecting costs in conceptualizing, planning, and completion of the task. With respect to spatial constraints, when the same goal was present for both hands there was strong evidence of the influence of both end-state comfort and bimanual constraints. This was often not the case when the task demands differed for the two hands, although the primary task goals were still attained. We suggest that the implementation of constraints is not based on a strict hierarchy; rather, certain constraints become dominant depending on the task and situation.

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