Muscle memory: An analysis of repetitive motion theory applied to percussion performance in undergraduate college students

Alexandro D Nichols, Tennessee State University

Abstract

Muscle Memory refers to any voluntary movement that is learned and becomes automatic through constant repetition (i.e., walking talking, writing, etc.). As a result, such movements become more accurate and efficient over a period of time. This study like many others is designed to examine the acquisition of a specific skill over a period of time. The skill that is focused on is one of the percussion rudiments, single paradiddle. The single paradiddle is one of the 40 rudiments required by the Percussive Arts Society, International. In this study a total of seven subjects were recruited from music appreciation courses taught at Tennessee State University. All subjects were taught how to perform single paradiddles. After being taught how to perform single paradiddles, each subject was recorded into a MIDI sequencing software via a MIDI trigger. Each subject was recorded for one minute while performing single paradiddles. The one minute recording session took place every day for three consecutive days. Timing and accuracy was measured during each session. The results indicated that as a whole, the group's accuracy increased at performing single paradiddles throughout the course of the study while the timing remained consistent.^

Subject Area

Education, Music

Recommended Citation

Alexandro D Nichols, "Muscle memory: An analysis of repetitive motion theory applied to percussion performance in undergraduate college students" (2012). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI1502627.
http://digitalscholarship.tnstate.edu/dissertations/AAI1502627

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