Journal article

Using the landmark task to test the underlying assumptions of unilateral contraction research

Ella K Moeck, Nicole A Thomas, Melanie KT Takarangi

LATERALITY | ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD | Published : 2019

Abstract

The unilateral contractions procedure (i.e., squeezing a ball with one hand) supposedly enhances a wide variety of cognitive functions, from episodic recall to choking under pressure. The practicality and affordability of this procedure makes it highly appealing. But does it work? We addressed this question by testing whether intermittent and sustained unilateral contractions shifted a well-supported hemispheric asymmetry: visuospatial attention. Based on prior research, contracting the left (or right) hand should lead baseline scores on the landmark task-a visuospatial attention measure-to deviate further left (or right). We meta-analysed the results of our six experiments and showed that t..

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Grants

Funding Acknowledgements

Thanks to Sophie Witcombe, Derryth Lloyd, Jahnavi Ponnen, and Isabella Zannetino for collecting data and to Gina Grimshaw and Laura Kranz for sharing their unpublished results. Ella Moeck was on an Australian Government Research Training Scheme Scholarship when this data was collected.