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The developmental integration of posture and manual control

Jeffrey M Haddad, University of Massachusetts Amherst


Studies in adults have shown that the role of the postural system during most motor behaviors is more complex than just merely minimizing positional deviations away from a stable equilibrium point. Rather, the postural system appears to be highly coordinated and integrated with other suprapostural behaviors. How the integration and coordination between the postural system and other suprapostural behaviors develops has not been extensively examined. In this project the developmental integration and coordination between posture and manual control was studied in children (7- and 10-years of age) and compared with healthy college aged adults. All subjects were required to fit a block through an opening as precision, postural and visual constraints were manipulated. Trunk and arm kinematics and center of pressure data were obtained. Compared to adults children adopt different postural strategies during the fitting task (Chapter 4), appear less able to modulate postural stability as precision demands increase (Chapter 5), and exhibit less ability to use functionally exploit postural fluctuations (Chapter 6). Taken together, results suggest that even by 10-years of age, the postural system is not integrated with the manual control system at adult like levels.

Subject Area

Sports medicine|Anatomy & physiology|Developmental psychology

Recommended Citation

Haddad, Jeffrey M, "The developmental integration of posture and manual control" (2006). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI3242318.