More bang for the buck

The purpose of this study was to examine whether conditions that provide performers with a sense of autonomy, by giving them choices, would increase movement efficiency. We evaluated neuromuscular activation as a function of choice, using surface electromyography (EMG), during isometric force production. Participants (N = 16) were asked to perform plantar flexions at each of three target torques (80%, 50%, 20% of maximum voluntary contractions) under both choice and control conditions. In the choice condition, they were able to choose the order of target torques, whereas the order was pre-determined in the control condition. Results demonstrated that while similar torques were produced under both conditions, EMG activity was lower in the choice relative to the control condition. Thus, providing performers with a choice led to reduced neuromuscular activity, or an increase in movement efficiency. This finding is in line with the notion that autonomy support readies the motor system for task execution by contributing to the coupling of goals and actions (Wulf and Lewthwaite, Psychon Bull Rev 23:1382–1414, 2016).



Work Title More bang for the buck
Subtitle autonomy support increases muscular efficiency
Open Access
  1. Takehiro Iwatsuki
  2. Hui Ting Shih
  3. Reza Abdollahipour
  4. Gabriele Wulf
License In Copyright (Rights Reserved)
Work Type Article
  1. Psychological Research
Publication Date February 1, 2021
Publisher Identifier (DOI)
Deposited November 28, 2021




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Version 1

  • Created
  • Added More_bang_for_the_buck_Autonomy_support_increases_muscular_efficiency.pdf
  • Added Creator Takehiro Iwatsuki
  • Added Creator Hui Ting Shih
  • Added Creator Reza Abdollahipour
  • Added Creator Gabriele Wulf
  • Published
  • Updated
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