Feeling in control of your footsteps: conscious gait monitoring and the auditory consequences of footsteps
Menzer, F, Brooks, A, Halje, P, Faller, C, Vetterli, M & Blanke, O 2010, 'Feeling in control of your footsteps: conscious gait monitoring and the auditory consequences of footsteps', Cognitive Neuroscience, vol. 1, no. 3, pp. 184-192.
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A fundamental aspect of the “I” of conscious experience is that the self is experienced as a single coherent representation of the entire, spatially situated body. The purpose of the present study was to investigate agency for the entire body. We provided participants with performance-related auditory cues and induced online sensorimotor conflicts in free walking conditions investigating the limits of human consciousness in moving agents. We show that the control of full-body locomotion and the building of a conscious experience of it are at least partially distinct brain processes. The comparable effects on agency using audio-motor and visuo-motor cues as found in the present and previous agency work may reflect common supramodal mechanisms in conscious action monitoring. Our data may help to refine the scientific criteria of selfhood and are of relevance for the investigation of neurological and psychiatric patients with disturbance of selfhood.