Postural time-to-contact as a precursor of visually induced motion sickness
The postural instability theory of motion sickness predicts that subjective symptoms of motion sickness will be preceded by unstable control of posture. In previous studies, this prediction has been confirmed with measures of the spatial magnitude and the temporal dynamics of postural activity. In the present study, we examine whether precursors of visually induced motion sickness might exist in postural time-to-contact, a measure of postural activity that is related to the risk of falling. Standing participants were exposed to oscillating visual motion stimuli in a standard laboratory protocol. Both before and during exposure to visual motion stimuli, we monitored the kinematics of the body’s center of pressure. We predicted that postural activity would differ between participants who reported motion sickness and those who did not, and that these differences would exist before participants experienced subjective symptoms of motion sickness. During exposure to visual motion stimuli, the multifractality of sway differed between the Well and Sick groups. Postural time-to-contact differed between the Well and Sick groups during exposure to visual motion stimuli, but also before exposure to any motion stimuli. The results provide a qualitatively new type of support for the postural instability theory of motion sickness.
KeywordsMotion sickness Postural stability Time-to-contact
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors reported no conflicts of interest.
- Harm DL (1990). Physiology of motion sickness symptoms. In: Crampton GH (ed) Motion and space sickness. CRC Press, Boca Raton, pp 154–177Google Scholar
- Lee DN, Lishman JR (1975) Visual proprioceptive control of stance. J Hum Mov Stud 1:87–95Google Scholar
- Riccio GE (1993) Information in movement variability about the qualitative dynamics of posture and orientation. In: Newell KM, Corcos DM (eds) Variability and motor control. Human Kinetics Publishers, Champaign, pp 317–357Google Scholar
- Scarr G (2014) Biotensegrity: the structural basis of life. Handspring Publishing Limited, Pencaitland, ScotlandGoogle Scholar
- Stanney K, Salvendy G, Deisinger J, DiZio P, Ellis S et al (1998) Aftereffects and sense of presence in virtual environments: Formulation of a research and development agenda. Report sponsored by the Life Sciences Division at NASA Headquarters. Int J Hum-Comput Interact 10:135–187CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Stevens SC, Parsons MG (2002) Effects of motion at sea on crew performance: a survey. Mar Technol 39:29–47Google Scholar