Biofeedback, Verbal Instructions and the Motor Skills Analogy

  • Derek Johnston
Part of the NATO Conference Series book series (NATOCS, volume 2)


Biofeedback has been largely atheoretical in its orientation; there does, however, seem to be a sizeable body of opinion that regards learning to voluntarily control a visceral response as analogous to learning a conventional motor skill. This view has been most clearly proposed by Lang, e.g., “the acquisition of voluntary control over a viscus is a skill ... it requires an organised sequence of activities, movements and symbolic information such as those required to play darts or hit a tennis ball accurately.” (Lang, 1975). Brener (1974), Engel (1972), and Schwartz (1974) take a similar position.


Motor Skill Voluntary Control Verbal Instruction Heart Rate Change Heart Rate Control 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Derek Johnston
    • 1
  1. 1.Oxford UniversityUK

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