Accessing interpersonal and intrapersonal coordination dynamics Academic Article uri icon


  • Both intrapersonal and interpersonal coordination dynamics have traditionally been investigated using relative phase patterns of in-phase (ϕ = 0°) and/or anti-phase (ϕ = 180°). Numerous investigations have demonstrated that coordination tasks that require other relative phase patterns (e.g., 90°) are difficult or near impossible to perform without extended practice. Recent findings, however, have demonstrated that an individual can produce a wide range of intrapersonal bimanual patterns within a few minutes of practice when provided integrated feedback. The present experiment was designed to directly compare intra- and interpersonal coordination performance and variability when provided Lissajous feedback or pacing metronome. Single participants (N = 12) and pairs of participants (N = 24, 12 pairs) were required to produce relative phase patterns between 0° and 180° in 30° increments using either pacing metronomes or Lissajous displays. The Lissajous displays involved a goal template and a cursor providing integrated feedback regarding the position of the two effectors. The results indicated both single and pairs of participants could effectively produce a large range of coordination patterns that typically act as repellers after only 6 min of practice when provided integrated feedback. However, single participants performed the in-phase coordination pattern more accurately and with less variability than paired participants, regardless of the feedback condition. These results suggest an advantage for intrapersonal coordination when performing in-phase coordination, possibly due to the stabilizing effect occurring via the neuro-muscular linkage between effectors.

altmetric score

  • 1

author list (cited authors)

  • Kovacs, A. J., Wang, Y., & Kennedy, D. M.

citation count

  • 4

publication date

  • January 2020