Timing processes in motor imagery

M.A. Grealy, G.F. Shearer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Previous research shows inconsistencies in the timing of imagined and actual actions. Little is known about the timing in imagery, or how it relates to other forms of timing. Two studies examined whether imagery timing followed Weber's law, where variations in judgements grow linearly as the interval duration increases, or Vierordt's law, where short durations are overestimated and longer durations underestimated. In Study 1 participants (n=22) mentally walked and estimated journey times for flat paths and stairways, with and without a load. The timing patterns that emerged did not conform to Weber's law. In Study 2 participants (n=20) completed imagery, reproduction, production, and estimation timing tasks. Timing errors for imagery along a straight path, reproduction, estimation, and production all showed 'Vierordt-like' effects. However, when imagining walking in a square participants consistently overestimated. It was concluded that imagery and interval timing processes are similar, but imagery timing is task dependent.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)867-892
Number of pages26
JournalEuropean Journal of Cognitive Psychology
Issue number5
Early online date1 Aug 2008
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2008


  • motor imagery
  • timing
  • cognitive psychology


Dive into the research topics of 'Timing processes in motor imagery'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this