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Right hand advantage in visually guided reaching and aiming movements: brief review and comments

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Although understanding of the organization and control of visually guided reaching and aiming movements is still sketchy and incomplete, evidence from behavioural studies supports the contention that right-handed individuals typically execute aiming movements with better speed, smoothness and consistency, and with a greater degree of spatial precision when performing them with their right hand. Creative attempts to account for the superiority of the right hand on a variety of visually guided reaching and aiming tasks have focused on the processing characteristics of the contralateral or left cerebral hemisphere. This brief review summarizes the research conducted over the last few decades on the subject, highlights the theoretical interpretations offered to explain manual asymmetries in the organization and control of goal-directed movements and identifies directions for further empirical research. The theoretical and practical implications of laterality research efforts along the lines of goal-directed behaviour are discussed.
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Keywords: Cerebral mechanisms; Left hemisphere; Manual asymmetry; Right hand; Visually-guided reaching and aiming movements

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Aristotelian University, Laboratory of Motor Control and Learning, Thessaloniki, 540 06, Greece

Publication date: August 15, 2006

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