Effects of auditory distraction on voluntary movements: exploring the underlying mechanisms associated with parallel processing

Bigliassi, Marcelo; Karageorghis, Costas I.; Nowicky, Alexander V.; Wright, Michael J. and Orgs, Guido. 2018. Effects of auditory distraction on voluntary movements: exploring the underlying mechanisms associated with parallel processing. Psychological Research, 82(4), pp. 720-733. ISSN 0340-0727 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

Highly demanding cognitive-motor tasks can be negatively influenced by the presence of auditory stim- uli. The human brain attempts to partially suppress the pro- cessing of potential distractors in order that motor tasks can be completed successfully. The present study sought to fur- ther understand the attentional neural systems that activate in response to potential distractors during the execution of movements. Nineteen participants (9 women and 10 men) were administered isometric ankle-dorsiflexion tasks for 10 s at a light intensity. Electroencephalography was used to assess the electrical activity in the brain, and a music excerpt was used to distract participants. Three conditions were administered: auditory distraction during the execu- tion of movement (auditory distraction; AD), movement execution in the absence of auditory distraction (control; CO), and auditory distraction in the absence of movement (stimulus-only; SO). AD was compared with SO to iden- tify the mechanisms underlying the attentional processing associated with attentional shifts from internal association (task-related) to external (task-unrelated) sensory cues. The results of the present study indicated that the EMG ampli- tude was not compromised when the auditory stimulus was administered. Accordingly, EEG activity was upregulated at 0.368 s in AD when compared to SO. Source reconstruc- tion analysis indicated that right and central parietal regions of the cortex activated at 0.368 s in order to reduce the processing of task-irrelevant stimuli during the execution of movements. The brain mechanisms that underlie the con- trol of potential distractors during exercise were possibly associated with the activity of the frontoparietal network.

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21 March 2017Accepted
8 April 2017Published Online
July 2018Published

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Date Deposited:

25 May 2017 09:44

Last Modified:

14 Apr 2021 11:12

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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