A STUDY OF THE EFFECTS OF HYPOXIA ON CHOICE REACTION TIME, MOVEMENT TIME, AND BLOCKING IN MAN

Authors
  1. Fowler, B.
Corporate Authors
York Univ, Downsview ONT (CAN) Dept of Physical Education and Athletics;Defence and Civil Inst of Environmental Medicine, Downsview ONT (CAN)
Abstract
The effects of hypoxia on reaction time (RT), movement time (MT), and blocking (extra-long responses) were studied in six human subjects. Low percentage oxygen mixtures were used to reduce and control the arterial oxyhemoglobin saturation in the range of 65% - 70%; this level being equivalent to an altitude of about 5800 m. It was found that hypoxia significantly increased "a", the intercept, and not "b", the slope, of the Hick-Hyman function. In addition, the distribution of the responses were examined for blocking, but such an effect was not evidenced, since all responses were slowed equally. It was also observed that hypoxia increased "b", the slope of the Fitts' Function. The reason for the change in this slope was attributed to a disruption of two mechanisms controlling MT: coordination of ballistic movements and central processing of error information. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed in the report.
Date of publication
15 Feb 1984
Number of Pages
33
DSTKIM No
84-02971
CANDIS No
122249
Format(s):
Microfiche filmed at DSIS;Originator's fiche received by DSIS;Hardcopy

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