Sensorimotor integration is enhanced in dancers and musicians

Abstract

Studying individuals with specialized training, such as dancers and musicians, provides an opportunity to investigate how intensive practice of sensorimotor skills affects behavioural performance across various domains. While several studies have found that musicians have improved motor, perceptual and sensorimotor integration skills compared to untrained controls, fewer studies have examined the effect of dance training on such skills. Moreover, no study has specifically compared the effects of dance versus music training on perceptual or sensorimotor performance. To this aim, in the present study, expert dancers, expert musicians and untrained controls were tested on a range of perceptual and sensorimotor tasks designed to discriminate performance profiles across groups. Dancers performed better than musicians and controls on a dance imitation task (involving whole-body movement), but musicians performed better than dancers and controls on a musical melody discrimination task as well as on a rhythm synchronization task (involving finger tapping). These results indicate that long-term intensive dance and music training are associated with distinct enhancements in sensorimotor skills. This novel work advances knowledge of the effects of long-term dance versus music training and has potential applications in therapies for motor disorders.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4

References

  1. Aagten-Murphy D, Cappagli G, Burr D (2014) Musical training generalises across modalities and reveals efficient and adaptive mechanisms for reproducing temporal intervals. Acta Psychol 147:25–33. doi:10.1016/j.actpsy.2013.10.007

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Bailey JA, Penhune VB (2010) Rhythm synchronization performance and auditory working memory in early- and late-trained musicians. Exp Brain Res 204:91–101. doi:10.1007/s00221-010-2299-y

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  3. Bailey JA, Zatorre RJ, Penhune VB (2014) Early musical training is linked to gray matter structure in the ventral premotor cortex and auditory–motor rhythm synchronization performance. J Cogn Neurosci 26:755–767. doi:10.1162/jocn_a_00527

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  4. Bangert M, Peschel T, Schlaug G, Rotte M, Drescher D, Hinrichs H, Heinze HJ, Altenmüller E (2006) Shared networks for auditory and motor processing in professional pianists: evidence from fMRI conjunction. NeuroImage 30:917–926

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  5. Bläsing B, Calvo-Merino B, Cross ES, Jola C, Honisch J, Stevens CJ (2012) Neurocognitive control in dance perception and performance. Acta Psychol 139:300–308. doi:10.1016/j.actpsy.2011.12.005

    Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Calvo-Merino B, Ehrenberg S, Leung D, Haggard P (2010) Experts see it all: configural effects in action observation. Psychol Res 74:400–406. doi:10.1007/s00426-009-0262-y

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  7. Caspers S, Zilles K, Laird AR, Eickhoff SB (2010) ALE meta-analysis of action observation and imitation in the human brain. NeuroImage 50:1148–1167. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2009.12.112

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  8. Chen JL, Penhune VB, Zatorre RJ (2008) Moving on time: brain network for auditory-motor synchronization is modulated by rhythm complexity and musical training. J Cogn Neurosci 20:226–239. doi:10.1162/jocn.2008.20018

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  9. Clark RA, Pua YH, Fortin K, Ritchie C, Webster KE, Denehy L, Bryant AL (2012) Validity of the Microsoft Kinect for assessment of postural control. Gait Posture 36:372–377. doi:10.1016/j.gaitpost.2012.03.033

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  10. Clark RA, Bower KJ, Mentiplay BF, Paterson K, Pua YH (2013) Concurrent validity of the Microsoft Kinect for assessment of spatiotemporal gait variables. J Biomech 46:2722–2725. doi:10.1016/j.jbiomech.2013.08.011

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  11. Coffey EBJ, Herholz SC, Scala S, Zatorre RJ (2011) Montreal Music History Questionnaire: a tool for the assessment of music-related experience in music cognition research. In: Conference proceedings from The Neurosciences and Music IV, Edinburgh, UK

  12. Cross ES, Hamilton AF, Grafton ST (2006) Building a motor simulation de novo: observation of dance by dancers. NeuroImage 31:1257–1267. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2006.01.033

    PubMed Central  Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  13. Cross ES, Kraemer DJ, Hamilton AF, Kelley WM, Grafton ST (2009) Sensitivity of the action observation network to physical and observational learning. Cereb Cortex 19:315–326. doi:10.1093/cercor/bhn083

    PubMed Central  Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  14. Crotts D, Thompson B, Nahom M, Ryan S, Newton RA (1996) Balance abilities of professional dancers on select balance tests. J Orthop Sport Phys 23:12–17. doi:10.2519/jospt.1996.23.1.12

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  15. Drost UC, Rieger M, Brass M, Gunter TC, Prinz W (2005) Action-effect coupling in pianists. Psychol Res 69:233–241. doi:10.1007/s00426-004-0175-8

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  16. Duncan RP, Earhart GM (2012) Randomized controlled trial of community-based dancing to modify disease progression in Parkinson disease. Neurorehab Neural Repair 26:132–143. doi:10.1177/1545968311421614

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Fernandes LF, de Barros RM (2012) Grip pattern and finger coordination differences between pianists and non-pianists. J Electromyogr Kines 22:412–418. doi:10.1016/j.jelekin.2012.02.007

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Foster NE, Zatorre RJ (2010) A role for the intraparietal sulcus in transforming musical pitch information. Cereb Cortex 20:1350–1359. doi:10.1093/cercor/bhp199

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  19. Fujioka T, Trainor LJ, Ross B, Kakigi R, Pantev C (2004) Musical training enhances automatic encoding of melodic contour and interval structure. J Cogn Neurosci 16:1010–1021. doi:10.1162/0898929041502706

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  20. Giacosa C, Karpati FJ, Foster NEV, Penhune VB, Hyde KL (2014) White matter differences in dancers and musicians. In: Conference proceedings from The Neurosciences and Music V, Dijon, France

  21. Grahn JA, Brett M (2007) Rhythm and beat perception in motor areas of the brain. J Cogn Neurosci 19:893–906. doi:10.1162/jocn.2007.19.5.893

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  22. Herholz SC, Zatorre RJ (2012) Musical training as a framework for brain plasticity: behavior, function, and structure. Neuron 76:486–502. doi:10.1016/j.neuron.2012.10.011

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  23. Iacoboni M (2005) Neural mechanisms of imitation. Curr Opin Neurobiol 15:632–637

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  24. IBM Corporation (2012) Restricted maximum likelihood method. SPSS Statistics 21.0.0. http://www-01.ibm.com/support/knowledgecenter/#!/SSLVMB_21.0.0/com.ibm.spss.statistics.cs/varcomp_reml_method.htm. Accessed 10 Aug 2015

  25. Inui N, Ichihara T (2001) Comparison of the relation between timing and force control during finger-tapping sequences by pianists and non pianists. Mot Control 5:385–398

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  26. Karpati FJ, Giacosa C, Foster NE, Penhune VB, Hyde KL (2014) The specificity of dance versus music training on gray matter structure. In: Conference proceedings from the 20th annual meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping, Hamburg, Germany

  27. Karpati FJ, Giacosa C, Foster NE, Penhune VB, Hyde KL (2015) Dance and the brain: a review. Ann N Y Acad Sci 1337:140–146. doi:10.1111/nyas.12632

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  28. Keller PE, Koch I (2008) Action planning in sequential skills: relations to music performance. Q J Exp Psychol 61:275–291. doi:10.1080/17470210601160864

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. Mandelbaum R, Lo AC (2014) Examining dance as an intervention in Parkinson’s disease: a systematic review. Am J Dance Ther 36:160–175. doi:10.1007/s10465-014-9181-6

    Article  Google Scholar 

  30. Miura A, Kudo K, Ohtsuki T, Kanehisa H (2011) Coordination modes in sensorimotor synchronization of whole-body movement: a study of street dancers and non-dancers. Hum Mov Sci 30:1260–1271. doi:10.1016/j.humov.2010.08.006

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  31. Miura A, Kudo K, Nakazawa K (2013) Action-perception coordination dynamics of whole-body rhythmic movement in stance: a comparison study of street dancers and non-dancers. Neurosci Lett 544:157–162. doi:10.1016/j.neulet.2013.04.005

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  32. Ono Y et al (2014) Frontotemporal oxyhemoglobin dynamics predict performance accuracy of dance simulation gameplay: temporal characteristics of top-down and bottom-up cortical activities. NeuroImage 85:461–470. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.05.071

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  33. Pau S, Jahn G, Sakreida K, Domin M, Lotze M (2013) Encoding and recall of finger sequences in experienced pianists compared with musicale naïve controls: a combined behavioral and functional imaging study. NeuroImage 64:379–387

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  34. Penhune VB (2011) Sensitive periods in human development: evidence from musical training. Cortex 47:1126–1137. doi:10.1016/j.cortex.2011.05.010

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  35. Proverbio AM, Calbi M, Manfredi M, Zani A (2014) Audio-visuomotor processing in the musician’s brain: an ERP study on professional violinists and clarinetists. Sci Rep 4:5866

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  36. Rammsayer T, Altenmuller E (2006) Temporal information processing in musicians and nonmusicians. Music Percept 24:37–48. doi:10.1525/mp.2006.24.1.37

    Article  Google Scholar 

  37. Rein S, Fabian T, Zwipp H, Rammelt S, Weindel S (2011) Postural control and functional ankle stability in professional and amateur dancers. Clin Neurophysiol 122:1602–1610. doi:10.1016/j.clinph.2011.01.004

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  38. Repp BH (2010) Sensorimotor synchronization and perception of timing: effects of music training and task experience. Hum Mov Sci 29:200–213. doi:10.1016/j.humov.2009.08.002

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  39. Rizzolatti G, Craighero L (2004) The mirror-neuron system. Annu Rev Neurosci 27:169–192

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  40. Schneider S, Schonle PW, Altenmuller E, Munte TF (2007) Using musical instruments to improve motor skill recovery following a stroke. J Neurol 254:1339–1346. doi:10.1007/s00415-006-0523-2

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  41. Sofianidis G, Hatzitaki V, McKinley P (2012) Effects of expertise and auditory guidance on traditional dance performance. J Dance Med Sci 16:57–64

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  42. Spilka MJ, Steele CJ, Penhune VB (2010) Gesture imitation in musicians and non-musicians. Exp Brain Res 204:549–558. doi:10.1007/s00221-010-2322-3

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  43. Stevens C, Winskel H, Howell C, Vidal LM, Latimer C, Milne-Home J (2010) Perceiving dance: schematic expectations guide experts’ scanning of a contemporary dance film. J Dance Med Sci 14:19–25

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  44. Tachibana A, Noah JA, Bronner S, Ono Y, Onozuka M (2011) Parietal and temporal activity during a multimodal dance video game: an fNIRS study. Neurosci Lett 503:125–130. doi:10.1016/j.neulet.2011.08.023

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  45. Taylor JE, Witt JK (2015) Listening to music primes space: pianists, but not novices, simulate heard actions. Psychol Res 79:175–182. doi:10.1007/s00426-014-0544-x

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  46. Thullier F, Moufti H (2004) Multi-joint coordination in ballet dancers. Neurosci Lett 369:80–84. doi:10.1016/j.neulet.2004.08.011

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  47. Verheul MH, Geuze RH (2004) Bimanual coordination and musical experience: the role of intrinsic dynamics and behavioral information. Mot Control 8:270–291

    Google Scholar 

  48. Washburn A, DeMarco M, de Vries S, Ariyabuddhiphongs K, Schmidt RC, Richardson MJ, Riley MA (2014) Dancers entrain more effectively than non-dancers to another actor’s movements. Front Hum Neurosci 8:800. doi:10.3389/fnhum.2014.00800

    PubMed Central  Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  49. Wechsler D (1997) Wechsler adult intelligence scale, 3rd edn. Harcourt Assessment, San Antonio

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgments

We would like to thank our participants for their time, as well as Alessia Di Cesare, Veronica Yuk, and Dana Boebinger for their assistance in the data collection process. This work was funded by a grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Council of Canada (NSERC) to Dr. Krista Hyde.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Falisha J. Karpati.

Ethics declarations

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest. All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study. Additional informed consent was obtained from all individual participants for whom identifying information is included in this article.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Karpati, F.J., Giacosa, C., Foster, N.E.V. et al. Sensorimotor integration is enhanced in dancers and musicians. Exp Brain Res 234, 893–903 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00221-015-4524-1

Download citation

Keywords

  • Dancers
  • Musicians
  • Sensorimotor integration
  • Dance video game
  • Rhythm
  • Melody