Perception and action are tightly coupled, and previous studies have demonstrated that action experience can improve perceptual judgment. We investigated whether this improvement in perceptual judgment could be attributed to knowledge regarding movement variability being gained during action experience. Fifteen adults made perceptual judgments regarding the passability of a series of aperture sizes. These judgments were made both before and after walking through the same set of apertures (action experience). When considering the group as a whole, perceptual judgment did not change after action experience. However, when splitting the group into those with low and high preaction perceptual judgments, only those with low perceptual judgments showed an improvement in perceptual judgment following action experience, which could be explained in part by movement variability during the approach. These data demonstrate that action informs perception and that this allows adults to account for movement variability when making perceptual judgments regarding action capabilities.
Du is with the Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, England. Barnett and Wilmut are with Oxford Brookes University.