Previous studies, mainly using a first-person perspective (1PP), have shown that the judgments of the hand laterality judgment (HLJ) task are dependent on biomechanical constraints (BC). Specifically, differing reaction times (RT) for hand pictures rotated medially or laterally around the mid sagittal plane are attributed to the BC effect on motor imagery. In contrast, we investigated whether the HLJ task is also subject to BC when performed from a third-person perspective (3PP) as well as 1PP using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) to measure the brain activity of prefrontal cortex (PFC) in right-handed participants assigned to 1PP or 3PP groups. The 1PP group judged whether a presented hand was their own left or right hand, and the 3PP group whether it was the other’s left or right hand. Using their HLJ task error rates, the 1PP and 3PP groups were subdivided into an Error Group (EG) and No Error Group (NEG). For the 1PP group, both EG and NEG showed a significant Hand Laterality × Orientation interaction for RT, indicating the BC effect on motor imagery. For the 3PP group, however, neither EG nor NEG showed the interaction, even though EG showed a significantly longer RT than NEG. These results suggest that the 3PP EG appropriately followed the 3PP task instruction, while the NEG might have taken 1PP. However, the 3PP EG NIRS profile of left PFC showed a significant Hand Laterality × Orientation interaction, while the 1PP EG did not. More noteworthy is that the left PFC activation of EG showed an interaction between the 1PP and 3PP groups when the left hand was presented. Furthermore, in the NEG, the PFC activation was not influenced by the BC in either the 1PP or 3PP condition. These results indicate that BC interferes with the HLJ task performed from the 1PP and 3PP.
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