Asymmetries in Motor Attention during a Cued Bimanual Reaching Task: Left and Right Handers Compared
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Several studies have indicated that right handers have attention biased toward their right hand during bimanual coordination (Buckingham and Carey, 2009; Peters, 1981). To determine if this behavioral asymmetry was linked to cerebral lateralization, we examined this bias in left and right handers by combining a discontinuous double-step reaching task with a Posner-style hand cueing paradigm. Left and right handed participants received a tactile cue (valid on 80% of trials) prior to a bimanual reach to target pairs. Right handers took longer to inhibit their right hand and made more right hand errors, suggesting that their dominant hand was more readily primed to move than their non-dominant hand, likely due to the aforementioned attentional bias. Left handers, however, showed neither of these asymmetries, suggesting that they lack an equivalent dominant hand attentional bias. The findings are discussed in relation to recent unimanual handedness tasks in right and left handers, and the lateralization of systems for speech, language and motor attention.