"Supplementary motor area and primary auditory cortex activation in an expert break-dancer during the kinesthetic motor imagery of dance to music"

The current study used functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine the neural activity of an expert dancer with 35 years of break-dancing experience during the kinesthetic motor imagery (KMI) of dance accompanied by highly familiar and unfamiliar music. The goal of this study was to examine the effect of musical familiarity on neural activity underlying KMI within a highly experienced dancer. In order to investigate this in both primary sensory and motor planning cortical areas, we examined the effects of music familiarity on the primary auditory cortex [Heschl’s gyrus (HG)] and the supplementary motor area (SMA). Our findings reveal reduced HG activity and greater SMA activity during imagined dance to familiar music compared to unfamiliar music. We propose that one’s internal representations of dance moves are influenced by auditory stimuli and may be specific to a dance style and the music accompanying it.

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