Decreased respiratory-related postural perturbations at the cervical level under cognitive load
Article dans une revue avec comité de lecture
PURPOSE: In healthy humans, postural and respiratory dynamics are intimately linked and a breathing-related postural perturbation is evident in joint kinematics. A cognitive dual-task paradigm that is known to induce both postural and ventilatory disturbances can be used to modulate this multijoint posturo-ventilatory (PV) interaction, particularly in the cervical spine, which supports the head. The objective of this study was to assess this modulation. METHODS: With the use of optoelectronic sensors, the breathing profile, articular joint motions of the cervical spine, hip, knees and ankles, and centre of pressure (CoP) displacement were measured in 20 healthy subjects (37 years old [29; 49], 10 females) during natural breathing (NB), a cognitive dual task (COG), and eyes-closed and increased-tidal-volume conditions. The PV interaction in the CoP and joint motions were evaluated by calculating the respiratory emergence (REm). RESULTS: Only the COG condition induced a decrease in the cervical REm (NB: 17.2% [7.8; 37.2]; COG: 4.2% [1.8; 10.0] p = 0.0020) concurrent with no changes in the cervical motion. The CoP REm (NB: 6.2% [3.8; 10.3]; COG: 12.9% [5.8; 20.7] p = 0.0696) and breathing frequency (NB: 16.6 min-1 [13.3; 18.7]; COG: 18.6 min-1 [16.3; 19.4] p = 0.0731) tended to increase, while the CoP (p = 0.0072) and lower joint motion displacements (p < 0.05) increased. CONCLUSION: This study shows stable cervical spine motion during a cognitive dual task, as well as increased postural perturbations globally and in other joints. The concurrent reduction in the PV interaction at the cervical spine suggests that this "stabilization strategy" is centrally controlled and is achieved by a reduction in the breathing-related postural perturbations at this level. Whether this strategy is a goal for maintaining balance remains to be studied.
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