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The sense of position and movement of the limbs and the sense of muscular tension. The awareness of the orientation of the body in space and the direction, extent, and rate of movement of the limbs depend in part upon information derived from sensory receptors in the joints, tendons, and muscles. Information from these receptors, called proprioceptors, is normally integrated with that arising from vestibular receptors (which signal gravitational acceleration and changes in velocity of movements of the head), as well as from visual, auditory, and tactile receptors. Sensory information from certain proprioceptors, particularly those in muscles and tendons, need not reach consciousness, but can be used by the motor system as feedback to guide postural adjustments and control of well-practiced or semiautomatic movements such as those involved in walking.

Receptors for proprioception are the endings of peripheral nerve fibers within the capsule or ligaments of the joints or within muscle. These endings are associated with specialized end organs such as Pacinian corpuscles, Ruffini's cylinders, and Golgi organs (the latter resembling histologic Golgi structures in the skin), and muscle spindles. See Cutaneous sensation, Sensation, Somesthesis

McGraw-Hill Concise Encyclopedia of Bioscience. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


The reception of internal stimuli.
Sensory awareness of one's location with regard to the external environment.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Influence of Muscle Fatigue on Position Sense and Motion Sense Position Sense
The influence of muscle fatigue on position sense in degrees in dancers and controls is presented in Table 2.
These findings suggest that joint position sense could serve as an index to determine the appropriate time to start functional exercise for safe return to sports activity after ankle injury.
First, before surgical reconstruction, the mean absolute error of joint position sense of the afflicted ankle was significantly larger than that of the healthy ankle.
Future investigations should focus on examining if a plateau effect for joint position sense occurs as fatigue increases.
(2000) Position sense acuity is diminished following repetitive low-intensity work to fatigue in a simulated occupational setting.
Uchio et al indicated that applying cooling pad to the knee for 15 minutes under the circulating medium at 4[degrees]C increases inaccuracy of position sense by 1.7 deg that is in consistent with our study.
Our experiment cannot answer this directly because it does not relate a clinical condition, such as falls, with foot position sense, but it suggests a relation.
There are few studies that have investigated differences in proprioceptive ability (joint position sense or kinesthesia) between the non-dominant and dominant legs of healthy sedentary individuals (45,46).
But that visual image seems not to be used for position sense," said Longo.
(1999) failed to reveal any significant differences between injured and uninjured ankles in either active or passive joint position sense. Feuerbach et al.
These assessment methods include the evaluation of joint position sense; joint movement sense; reflex response time; and static balance.

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