Perceptual Motor Dynamics Research Laboratory

The research focus of the Perceptual-Motor Dynamics Laboratory is centered on the study of human perceptual-motor control. The long-term objective of this research program is to understand the neurobehavioural mechanisms underlying the sensory and perceptual contributions to the preparation and execution of goal-directed actions. The research program is motivated by longstanding interests in issues pertaining to:

  1. the volitional and automatic control of visually-guided action
  2. the processes underlying sensorimotor adaptation and learning
  3. the mechanisms underlying motor preparation

A current objective of the lab’s research is to investigate the principles that govern the sensorimotor adaptation of goal-directed actions in the face of systematic perturbations to the sensory/perceptual environment and/or the effector machinery. The capacity of our sensorimotor system to adapt – to detect and correct movement error, to refine our actions and adjust to changing conditions in the environment and/or neuromuscular system – is important to act upon and interact with the world. The aim of this research to further our understanding of sensorimotor adaptation.

The lab is equipped with digital and analog data acquisition systems, including electromyography, electroencephalography, electrophysiological stimulation, 3D motion analysis, and torque motor systems. Software for experiment control and data analyses are written in LabView, Matlab, Visual Basic, and R.


Romeo Chua is the research supervisor of the Perceptual-Motor Dynamics Lab. He obtained a BSc in Kinesiology from Simon Fraser University, an MSc in Human Biodynamics at McMaster University, and completed his PhD in Human Motor Control in Kinesiology at Simon Fraser University. After four winters at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, he moved to his current position in the School of Kinesiology at UBC in 1999.

Current Trainees

  • Hannah Martin
  • Sabrina Hou
  • David Yang

Recent Trainees

Chris completed his undergrad degree at UBC (Human Kinetics) in 2011 and his MSc in 2013 under the supervision of Ian Franks. He was a member of the PMD lab from 2013-2018 during his PhD.  Co-supervised by Ian Franks and Romeo Chua, his dissertation work investigated volitional modulation of rapid feedback responses. During his graduate work, Chris was funded by NSERC, a UBC 4YF, and was recognized with the Franklin Henry Young Scientist Award at SCAPPS. Chris is currently a BrainsCAN Postdoctoral Associate in Paul Gribble’s Lab at Western University.

During my MSc under the supervision of Dr. Romeo Chua, Damian explored many areas of human motor behaviour. Using simple reaching movements, he investigated topics such as proprioceptive drift and, for his thesis work, tactile perception and multisensory integration. Aside from reaching during experiments, he primarily enjoyed reaching for espresso in the lab. Damian is now pursuing his PhD with Dr. Luc Tremblay in the Perceptual-Motor Behaviour Lab at the University of Toronto.

  • Brynn Alexander BKin
  • Ingrid Yuen BKin
  • Tom Kanwischer BKin
  • Sarvenaz Heirani Moghaddam BKin
  • Kimberly Bennett BKin
  • Nicolette Gowan BKin
  • Jonathan Kim BKin
  • Jada Holmes BKin
  • Tavis Bruce BKin
  • Laurence Chin BKin
  • Annie Maurer BKin
  • Hyung Kyung Kim BKin
  • Curtis May BKin
  • Amy Wang BKin
  • Adina Diaconu BKin
  • Alex Klemm BKin
  • Julia Melanson BKin
  • Aly Plecash BKin
  • Nicholas Ponzetti BKin
  • Cara Rurak BKin
  • Lauren Wou BKin
  • Melissa Cory BHK
  • Silvia Hua BHK
  • Chris Dakin BHK
  • Andrea Martens BHK
  • Rudy Chow BHK

Journals

  • Dosso, J.A., Chua, R., Weeks, D.J., Turk, D.J., & Kingstone, A. (2019). Attention and awareness: Representation of visuomotor space in split-brain patients.  Cortex.
  • Karlinsky, A., Lam, M.Y., Chua, R., & Hodges, N.J. (2018). Whose turn is it anyway? The moderating role of response-execution certainty on the joint Simon effect.  Psychological Research, 83, 833–841.
  • Chua, R., Cameron, B.D., & Blinch, J.P. (2016). Volitional initiation and fast visuomotor networks: Why movements are slow to start and quick to correct. Motor Control, 20, 154-161.
  • Cleworth, T., Inglis, J.T., Chua, R., & Carpenter, M.G. (2016). Influence of virtual height exposure on postural reactions to support surface translations. Gait and Posture, 47, 96-102.
  • Flannigan, J., Chua, R., & Cressman, E.K. (2016). The rapid-chase theory does not extend to movement execution. Consciousness and Cognition, 42, 75-92.
  • Forgaard, C.J., Franks, I.M., Maslovat, D., & Chua R. (2016). Perturbation predictability can influence the long-latency stretch response. PLOS One, 11(10):e0163854.
  • Forgaard, C.J., Franks, I.M., Maslovat, D., Gowan, N.J., Kim, J.C., & Chua R. (2016). An examination of the startle response during upper limb stretch perturbations. Neuroscience, 337, 163-176.
  • Kennefick, M., Maslovat, D., Chua, R., & Carlsen, A.N. (2016). Corticospinal excitability is reduced in a simple reaction time task requiring complex timing. Journal of Neurophysiology, 1642, 319-326.
  • Maslovat, D., Chua, R., Klapp, S.T., & Franks, I.M. (2016). Independent planning of timing and sequencing for complex movements. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 42, 1158-1172.
  • Roberts, J.W., Blinch, J., Elliott, D., Chua, R., Lyons, J.L., & Welsh, T.N. (2016). The violation of Fitts’ Law: an examination displacement biases and corrective submovements. Experimental Brain Research, 234, 151-163.
  • Blinch, J.P., de Cellio Martins G, & Chua, R. (2017). Effects of integrated feedback on discrete bimanual movements in choice reaction time. Experimental Brain Research, 235, 247-257.
  • Maslovat, D., Chua, R., & Franks, I.M. (2017). Investigation of timing preparation during response initiation and execution using a startling acoustic stimulus. Experimental Brain Research, 235, 15-27.
  • Murnaghan C, Carpenter MG, Chua R & Inglis JT (2017). Keeping still doesn't "make sense": examining a role for movement variability by stabilizing the arm during a postural control task. Journal of Neurophysiology, 117, 846-852.
  • Chua, R., Cameron, B.D., & Blinch, J.P. (2016). Volitional initiation and fast visuomotor networks: Why movements are slow to start and quick to correct. Motor Control, 20, 154-161.
  • Cleworth, T., Inglis, J.T., Chua, R., & Carpenter, M.G. (2016). Influence of virtual height exposure on postural reactions to support surface translations. Gait and Posture, 47, 96-102.
  • Flannigan, J., Chua, R., & Cressman, E.K. (2016). The rapid-chase theory does not extend to movement execution. Consciousness and Cognition, 42, 75-92.
  • Forgaard, C.J., Franks, I.M., Maslovat, D., & Chua R. (2016). Perturbation Predictability Can Influence the Long-Latency Stretch Response. PLOS One, 11(10):e0163854.
  • Forgaard, C.J., Franks, I.M., Maslovat, D., Gowan, N.J., Kim, J.C., & Chua R. (2016). An examination of the startle response during upper limb stretch perturbations. Neuroscience, 337, 163-176.
  • Kennefick, M., Maslovat, D., Chua, R., & Carlsen, A.N. (2016). Corticospinal excitability is reduced in a simple reaction time task requiring complex timing. Journal of Neurophysiology, 1642, 319-326.
  • Maslovat, D., Chua, R., Klapp, S.T., & Franks, I.M. (2016). Independent planning of timing and sequencing for complex movements. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 42, 1158-1172.
  • Roberts, J.W., Blinch, J., Elliott, D., Chua, R., Lyons, J.L., & Welsh, T.N. (2016). The violation of Fitts’ Law: an examination displacement biases and corrective submovements. Experimental Brain Research, 234, 151-163.
  • Bjerkefors, A., Squair, J.W., Chua, R., Lam, T., Chen, Z., & Carpenter, M.G. (2015). Assessment of abdominal muscle function in individuals with motor complete spinal cord injury above T6 in response to transcranial magnetic stimulation and voluntary activation. Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine, 47, 138-146.
  • Blinch, J.P., Cameron, B.D., Franks, I.M., Carpenter, M.G., & Chua, R. (2015). Facilitation and interference during the preparation of bimanual movements: Contributions from starting locations, movement amplitudes, and target locations. Psychological Research, 79, 978-988.
  • Blinch, J.P., Franks, I.M., Carpenter, M.G., & Chua, R. (2015). Unified nature of bimanual movements revealed by separating the preparation of each arm. Experimental Brain Research, 233, 1931-1944.
  • Forgaard, C.J., Franks, I.M., Maslovat, D., Chin, L., & Chua, R. (2015). Voluntary reaction time and long-latency reflex modulation. Journal of Neurophysiology, 114, 3386-3399.
  • Maslovat, D., Chua, R., Carlsen, A.N., May, C., Forgaard, C.J., & Franks, I.M. (2015). A startling acoustic stimulus interferes with upcoming motor preparation: Evidence for a startle refractory period. Acta Psychologica, 158, 36-42.
  • Blinch, J.P., Cameron, B.D., Cressman, E.K., Franks, I.M., Carpenter, M.G., & Chua, R. (2014). Comparing movement preparation of unimanual, bimanual symmetric, and bimanual asymmetric movements. Experimental Brain Research, 232, 947-955.
  • Murnaghan, C.D., Squair, J.W., Chua, R., Inglis, J.T., & Carpenter, M.G. (2014). Cortical contributions to control of posture during unrestricted and restricted stance. Journal of Neurophysiology, 111, 1920-1926.
  • Ong, N.T., Lohse, K., Chua, R., Sinnet, S., & Hodges, N.J. (2014). A test of motor skill-specific action embodiment in ice-hockey players. Acta Psychologica, 150, 61-68.
  • Stevenson, A.J.T., Chiu, C., Maslovat, D., Chua, R., Gick, B., Blouin, J-S., Franks, I.M. (2014). Cortical involvement in the startreact effect. Neuroscience, 269, 21-34.
  • Campbell, A.D., Squair, J., Chua, R., Inglis, J.T., & Carpenter, M.G. (2013). First trial and StartReact effects induced by balance perturbations to upright stance. Journal of Neurophysiology, 110, 2236-2245.
  • Cameron, B.D., Blinch, J.P., Plecash, A., Squair, J., Wou, L., & Chua, R. (2013). Adapting to target error without visual feedback. Acta Psychologica, 143, 129-135.
  • Cameron, B.D., Cheng, D.T., Chua, R., van Donkelaar, P., & Binsted, G. (2013). Explicit knowledge and real-time action control: anticipating a change does not make us respond more quickly. Experimental Brain Research, 229, 359-372.
  • Cressman, E.K., Lam, M.Y., Franks, I.M., Enns, J.T., & Chua, R. (2013). Unconscious and out of control: Subliminal priming is insensitive to observer expectations. Consciousness and Cognition, 22, 716-728.
  • Dakin, C.J., Inglis, J.T., Chua, R., & Blouin, J.S. (2013). Muscle-specific modulation of vestibular reflexes with increased locomotor velocity and cadence. Journal of Neurophysiology, 110, 86-94.
  • Forgaard, C.J., Maslovat, D., Carlsen, A.N., Chua, R., & Franks, I.M. (2013). Startle reveals independent preparation and initiation of the triphasic bursts in targeted ballistic movements. Journal of Neurophysiology, 110, 2113-2128.
  • Horslen, B.C., Murnaghan, C.D., Inglis, J.T., Chua, R., & Carpenter, M.G. (2013). Effects of postural threat on spinal stretch reflexes: Evidence for increased muscle spindle sensitivity? Journal of Neurophysiology, 110, 899-906.
  • Maslovat, D., Chua, R., & Hodges, N.J. (2013). When unintended movements “leak” out: A startling acoustic stimulus can elicit a prepared response during motor imagery and action observation. Neuropsychologia, 51, 838-844.
  • Maslovat, D., Chua, R., Spencer, H.C., Forgaard, C.J., Carlsen, A.N., & Franks, .IM. (2013). Evidence for a response preparation bottleneck during dual-task performance: Effect of a startling acoustic stimulus on the psychological refractory period. Acta Psychologica, 144, 481-487.
  • Murnaghan, C.D., Squair, J.W., Chua, R., Inglis, J.T., & Carpenter, M.G. (2013). Are increases in COP variability observed when participants are provided explicit verbal cues prior to COM stabilization? Gait & Posture, 38, 734-738.
  • Blinch, J.P., Cameron, B.D., Hodges, N.J., & Chua, R. (2012). Do preparation or control processes result in the modulation to Fitts' law for movements to targets with placeholders? Experimental Brain Research, 223, 505-515.
  • Cameron, B.D., Franks, I.M., Inglis, J.T., & Chua, R. (2012). The adaptability of self-action perception and movement control when the limb is passively versus actively moved. Consciousness and Cognition, 21, 4-17.
  • Campbell, A.D., Chua, R., Inglis, J.T., & Carpenter, M.G. (2012). Startle induces early initiation of classically conditioned postural responses. Journal of Neurophysiology, 108, 2946-2956.
  • Houldin, A., Chua, R., Carpenter, M.G., & Lam, T. (2012). Limited interlimb transfer of locomotor adaptations to a velocity-dependent force field during unipedal walking. Journal of Neurophysiology, 108, 943-952.
  • Maslovat, D., Kennedy, P.M., Forgaard, C.J., Chua, R., & Franks, I.M. (2012). The effects of prepulse inhibition timing on the startle reflex and reaction time. Neuroscience Letters, 513, 243-247.
  • Blouin, J-S., Dakin, C.J., van den Doel , K., Chua, R., McFadyen, B.J., & Inglis, T.J. (2011). Extracting phase-dependent human vestibular reflexes during locomotion using both time and frequency correlation approaches. Journal of Applied Physiology, 111, 1484-1490.
  • Blinch, J.P., Cameron, B.D., Franks, I.M., & Chua, R. (2011). Bimanual reaches with symbolic cues exhibit errors in target selection. Experimental Brain Research, 212, 541-554.
  • Cameron, B.D., Franks, I.M., Inglis, J.T., & Chua, R. (2011). Reach adaptation to online target error. Experimental Brain Research, 209, 171-180.
  • Carlsen, A.N., Lam, M.Y., Maslovat, D., Chua, R. (2011). Reaction time effects due to imperative stimulus modality are absent when a startle elicits a pre-programmed action. Neuroscience Letters, 500, 177-181.
  • Carlsen, A.N., Maslovat, D., Lam, M.Y., Chua, R.¸ & Franks, I.M. (2011). Considerations for the use of a startling acoustic stimulus in studies of motor preparation in humans. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 35, 366-376.
  • Davis, J.R., Horslen, B.C., Nishikawa, K., Fukushima, K., Chua, R.,Inglis, J.T., & Carpenter, M.G. (2011). Human proprioceptive adaptations during states of height-induced fear and anxiety. Journal of Neurophysiology, 106, 3082-3090.
  • Maslovat, D., Hodges, N.J., Chua, R., & Franks, I.M. (2011). Motor preparation of spatially and temporally defined movements: Evidence from startle. Journal of Neurophysiology, 106, 885-894.
  • Maslovat, D., Hodges, N.J., Chua, R., & Franks, I.M. (2011). Motor preparation and the effects of practice: Evidence from startle. Behavioral Neuroscience, 125, 226-240.
  • Sinnett, S., Hodges, N.J., Chua, R., & Kingstone, A. (2011). Embodiment of motor skills when observing expert and novice athletes. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 64, 657-668.

Please contact Dr. Romeo Chua if interested in inquiring about graduate supervision, volunteer opportunities, or to participate as a participant in one of our ongoing studies.

Location:
School of Kinesiology
Room 202, Osborne Centre Unit 2
6108 Thunderbird Boulevard
University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC.
V6T 1Z3

604-822-1339
romeo.chua@ubc.ca