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J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform. 1991 Feb;17(1):198-218.

A developmental study of the relationship between geometry and kinematics in drawing movements.

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Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, University of Geneva, Switzerland.


Trajectory and kinematics of drawing movements are mutually constrained by functional relationships that reduce the degrees of freedom of the hand-arm system. Previous investigations of these relationships are extended here by considering their development in children between 5 and 12 years of age. Performances in a simple motor task--the continuous tracing of elliptic trajectories--demonstrate that both the phenomenon of isochrony (increase of the average movement velocity with the linear extent of the trajectory) and the so-called two-thirds power law (relation between tangential velocity and curvature) are qualitatively present already at the age of 5. The quantitative aspects of these regularities evolve with age, however, and steady-state adult performance is not attained even by the oldest children. The power-law formalism developed in previous reports is generalized to encompass these developmental aspects of the control of movement.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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