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Title: Initial development of skill with a reversed bicycle and a case series of experienced riders

Riding a bicycle is considered a durable skill that cannot be forgotten. Here, novice participants practiced riding a reversed bicycle, in which a reversing gear inverted the handlebar’s rotation. Although learning to ride the reversed bicycle was possible, it was slow, highly variable, implicit, and followed an S-shape pattern. In the initial learning phase, failed attempts to ride the normal bicycle indicated strong interference between the two bicycle skills. While additional practice decreased this interference effect, a subset of learners could not ride either bicycle after eight sessions of practice. Experienced riders who performed extensive practice could switch bicycles without failed attempts and exhibited similar performance (i.e., similar handlebar oscillations) on both bicycles. However, their performance on the normal bicycle was worse than that of the novice bicycle riders at baseline. In conclusion, “unlearning” of the normal bicycle skill precedes the initial learning of the reversed bicycle skill, and a signature of such unlearning is still present following extensive practice.

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Author(s) / Creator(s):
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Publisher / Repository:
Nature Publishing Group
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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