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Arturo Forner-Cordero, Virgínia H. Quadrado, Sitsofe A. Tsagbey, and Bouwien C.M. Smits-Engelsman

The present study analyzes the learning in a coincident timing task with force perturbation. We aimed to verify whether a predictable load (constant spring) applied to hand movements could facilitate learning and, thus, performance improvement with respect to movements without any external load and an unpredictable load to perform a coincident timing task with a few number of repetitions (n = 28) under acquisition and transfer phases. The results showed that the group with a predictable load had a significant better performance with lower percentage of errors and smaller time variance in the acquisition and transfer phase. The groups with no load and unpredictable load had a similar performance in the transfer phase. It can be concluded that adding a predictable force to the coincident timing task results in performance improvement. Therefore, learning to reach a target at a correct time could be improved with the application of predictable external loads.