Journal of Medical and Biological Engineering

, Volume 39, Issue 1, pp 54–69 | Cite as

Analysis of Electroencephalography Event-Related Desynchronisation and Synchronisation Induced by Lower-Limb Stepping Motor Imagery

  • Yi-Hung Liu
  • Li-Fong Lin
  • Chun-Wei Chou
  • Yun Chang
  • Yu-Tsung Hsiao
  • Wei-Chun HsuEmail author
Original Article


Bilateral upper-limb motor imagery has been demonstrated to be a useful mental task in electroencephalography (EEG)-based brain–computer interfaces (BCIs). By contrast, few studies have examined bilateral lower-limb motor imagery, and all of them have focused on imaginary foot movements. The left–right classification accuracy reported in these studies based on the EEG mu rhythm (8–13 Hz) and beta band (13–30 Hz) remains unsatisfactory. The present study investigated the possibility of using lower-limb stepping motor imagery as the mental task and analysed the EEG difference between imaginary left-leg stepping (L-stepping) and right-leg stepping (R-stepping) movements. An experimental paradigm was designed to collect 5-s motor imagery EEG signals at nine recording sites around the vertex of the brain. Results from eight able-bodied participants indicated that the commonly used mu event-related desynchronisation (ERD) feature exhibited no significant difference between the two imaginary movements for all recording sites and all time intervals within the 5-s motor imagery period. Regarding the other commonly used feature, beta event-related synchronisation, no significant difference between the two imagery tasks was observed for most of the recording sites and time intervals. Instead, theta band (4–8 Hz) ERD significantly differed between the L- and R-stepping imagery tasks at five sites (FC4, C3, CP3, Cz, CPz) within the first 2 s after motor imagery cue onset. The findings from the present study may be a basis for further development of BCI systems for decoding left and right stepping during mental exercise where the two motions are alternately imagined.


Electroencephalography Stepping Motor imagery Brain–computer interface 



This work was supported by the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST), Taiwan, under Grant No. 103-2923-E-027-001-MY3. The Authors would like to thank Dr. Chien-Te Wu, National Taiwan University, and Mr. Shiuan Huang, National Taipei University of Technology, Taipei, Taiwan, for useful discussion.


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Copyright information

© Taiwanese Society of Biomedical Engineering 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yi-Hung Liu
    • 1
  • Li-Fong Lin
    • 2
    • 5
  • Chun-Wei Chou
    • 3
  • Yun Chang
    • 1
  • Yu-Tsung Hsiao
    • 1
  • Wei-Chun Hsu
    • 4
    • 6
    • 7
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Mechanical EngineeringNational Taipei University of TechnologyTaipeiTaiwan
  2. 2.Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Shuang Ho HospitalTaipei Medical UniversityTaipeiTaiwan
  3. 3.Department of Mechanical EngineeringChung Yuan Christian UniversityTaipeiTaiwan
  4. 4.Graduate Institute of Biomedical EngineeringNational Taiwan University of Science and TechnologyTaipeiTaiwan
  5. 5.School of Gerontology and Health ManagementTaipei Medical UniversityTaipeiTaiwan
  6. 6.National Defense Medical CenterTaipeiTaiwan
  7. 7.Department of Athletic PerformanceNational Taiwan Normal UniversityTaipeiTaiwan

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