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ERD modulations during motor imageries relate to users’ traits and BCI performances

Sébastien Rimbert
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Fabien Lotte


Improving user performances is one of the major issues for Motor Imagery (MI)-based BCI control. MI-BCIs exploit the modulation of sensorimotor rhythms (SMR) over the motor and sensorimotor cortices to discriminate several mental states and enable user interaction. Such modulations are known as Event-Related Desynchronization (ERD) and Synchronization (ERS), coming from the mu (7-13 Hz) and beta (15-30 Hz) frequency bands. This kind of BCI opens up promising fields, particularly to control assistive technologies, for sport training or even for post-stroke motor rehabilitation. However, MI-BCIs remain barely used outside laboratories, notably due to their lack of robustness and usability (15 to 30% of users seem unable to gain control of an MI-BCI). One way to increase user performance would be to better understand the relationships between user traits and ERD/ERS modulations underlying BCI performance. Therefore, in this article we analyzed how cerebral motor patterns underlying MI tasks (i.e., ERDs and ERSs) are modulated depending (i) on nature of the task (i.e., right-hand MI and left-hand MI), (ii) the session during which the task was performed (i.e., calibration or user training) and (iii) on the characteristics of the user (e.g., age, gender, manual activity, personality traits) on a large MI-BCI data base of N=70 participants. One of the originality of this study is to combine the investigation of human factors related to the user's traits and the neurophysiological ERD modulations during the MI task. Our study revealed for the first time, associations between ERD and both age, level of study, impression management and anxiety.
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Dates and versions

hal-03634491 , version 1 (07-04-2022)
hal-03634491 , version 2 (09-08-2022)


  • HAL Id : hal-03634491 , version 2


Sébastien Rimbert, Fabien Lotte. ERD modulations during motor imageries relate to users’ traits and BCI performances. EMBC 2022 - 44th International Engineering in Medicine and Biology Conference, Jul 2022, Glasgow, United Kingdom. ⟨hal-03634491v2⟩
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