Postural control modulation during motor imagery tasks: A systematic review


  • Nélio Silva de Souza Trastornos del Movimiento y Sueño (TMS) Hospital General Dr. Manuel Gea Gonzalez/UNAM
  • Ana Carolina Gomes Martins
  • Keila da Silva Canuto
  • Dionis Machado
  • Silmar Teixeira
  • Marco Orsini
  • Manuel Menendez-Gonzalez
  • Bruna Velasques
  • Pedro Ribeiro
  • Victor Hugo do Vale Bastos
  • Oscar Arias-Carrión



postural control, postural balance, motor imagery, mental simulation, mental training


The motor imagery (MI) has two strategies (kinesthetic and visual) and can be defined as an act to codify the mental rehearsal of an intended action, without executing it. Studying the execution of the movement, several researchers believe that the deep muscles of the trunk are activated before the agonist of the limbs, showing a motor neurophysiologic recruitment order.

This behavior can be also seen during MI tasks as the postural control, because the postural control is inserted in the movement context. The aim was to investigate, by a systematic review, evidences of MI and the postural control on healthy subjects. The selected articles were searched on different databases, dated from 1985 to 2014.

Twelve studies were selected regarding the MI and the postural control on healthy subjects. All articles using balance scale or those which were about clinical conditions were excluded. Data show that kinesthetic MI with high levels of vividness promotes major changes in the body oscillations when comparing with the visual MI. To date, the number of articles about this theme is limited and the results should be interpreted cautiously







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