Sektion Theoretische Sensomotorik

The Section for Computational Sensomotorics investigates theoretical principles in the perception and control of motor actions. Research is organized around three main topics:

1) Clinical movement control and rehabilitation,
2) neural mechanisms of action processing, and
3) biologically-inspired technical applications and biomedical engineering.

Research is highly interdisciplinary, including psychophysical and clinical experimentation, the development of mathematical and computational models, and the development of technical systems that exploit brain-inspired principles or support accurate diagnosis and rehabilitation training in neurological diseases.

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Clinical Movement Control and Rehabilitation


Applying advanced computational methods, we analyze the body movements of patients with neurological movement disorders. Goals of this work are to identify and to quantify disorder-specific or lesion-specific changes in movement patterns, including especially complex whole-body movements like gait or interactive tasks. Our work addresses movement deficits associated with various neurological disorders, including cerebellar ataxia, Parkinson's disease and apraxia. Another focus of this work is the investigation of motor adaptation and training effects in normal participants and during motor rehabilitation training for neurological patients.


Current projects 

  • Quantitative analysis of motor changes in preclinical stages of degenerative cerebellar ataxia and Parkinson’s disease
  • Rehabilitation training exploiting computer games and biofeedback
  • Influence of training in preclinical stages of degenerative movement disorders
  • Development of cheap systems for movement quantification in neurology exploiting multi-Kinect systems
  • Mechanisms of motor learning and their impairment by cerebellar lesions
  • Deficits in representations of action semantics in apraxia


Neural and Computational Principles of Action Processing


We investigate the mechanisms of the perception of complex body movements, and their relationship with motor execution. Our work combines psychophysical experiments and the development of physiologically-inspired neural models in close collaboration with electrophysiologists at the HIH and the CIN. In addition, exploiting advanced methods from computer animation and Virtual Reality (VR), we investigate the role of body movements (facial and body expressions) in social communications and psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia and autism spectrum disorders. 


Current projects

  • Neuralphysiologically-inspired models of visual action perception and the perception of causality
  • Neurodynamic model for multi-stability in the action perception
  • Processing of emotional body expressions in health and disease
  • Production and perception of interactive emotional body expressions
  • Bayesian models for the influence of agency on sensorimotor integration


Biomedical and biologically-motivated technical applications


We develop technical applications for the quantification of movements in patients, specifically focusing on pre-clinical diagnosis of movement disorders and the support of rehabilitation training. In addition, exploiting principles derived from the nervous system, we develop technical systems and algorithms for the recognition and synthesis of complex body movements, e.g. for robotics and computer vision. Present research foci in this domain are the design of cheap systems for movement analysis exploiting the Microsoft Kinect system, and methods for the modeling of complex coordinated movement patterns of humans, which can be exploited for movement synthesis in humanoid robots. A further novel focus is to explore the use of humanoid robots for rehabilitation training.


Current projects

  • Synthesis of complex locomotion behavior for humanoid robots based on biological principles
  • Modeling of human robot interaction and use of humanoid robots for rehabilitation training
  • Online synthesis of emotional interactive full-body motion





Giese M A, Ilg W, Golla H, Thier HP (2009) System und Verfahren zum Bestimmen einer Bewegungskategorie sowie deren Ausprägungsgrad. Patent 10 2004 060 602.1-35, Deutsches Patentamt, München.

Giese M A (1998) Effiziente Methode zur Implementierung dynamischer neuronaler Felder. Patent 198 44 364.1, Deutsches Patentamt, München.

 Mirjana Angelovska
Mirjana Angelovska
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89137 
Dr. Enrico Chiovetto
Dr. Enrico Chiovetto PostDoc
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89130 
Dr. Andrea Christensen
Dr. Andrea Christensen PostDoc
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89125 
Dr. Tjeerd Dijkstra
Dr. Tjeerd Dijkstra PostDoc
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89135 
 Leonid Fedorov
Leonid Fedorov PhD Student
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89223 
Prof. Dr. Martin Giese
Prof. Dr. Martin Giese Research Group Leader
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89124 
 Mohammad Hovaidi Ardestani
Mohammad Hovaidi Ardestani PhD Student
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89138 
Dr. Winfried Ilg
Dr. Winfried Ilg PostDoc
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89125 
Dr. Jindrich Kodl
Dr. Jindrich Kodl PostDoc
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89224 
 Nicolas Ludolph
Nicolas Ludolph PhD Student
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89131 
 Albert Mukovskiy
Albert Mukovskiy PhD Student
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89132 
Dipl. Inf. Björn Müller
Dipl. Inf. Björn Müller IT Systemadministrator / Software Development
07071 29-81999 
 Nick Taubert
Nick Taubert PhD Student
Section Computational Sensomotorics
07071 29-89135 



Caggiano V, Giese MA, Thier P, Casile A (2015) Encoding of point of view during action observation in the Local Field Potentials of macaque area F5. European Journal of Neuroscience 41(4):466-476

Ilg W, Bastian A, Boesch S, Burciu R, Celnik P, Claassen J et al. (2014) Consensus Paper: Management of Degenerative Cerebellar Disorders. Cerebellum 13(2):248-268

Giese MA (2014) Mirror representations innate versus determined by experience: A viewpoint from learning theory. Behavioural and Brain Sciences 37(2):201-202

Christensen A, Giese MA, Sultan F, Mueller OM, Goericke SL, Ilg W et al. (2014) An intact action-perception coupling depends on the integrity of the cerebellum. Journal of Neuroscience 34(19):6707-6716

Fleischer F, Caggiano V, Thier P, Giese MA (2013) Physiologically inspired model for the visual recognition of transitive hand actions. Journal of Neuroscience 15(33):6563-6580

Caggiano V, Pomper JK, Fleischer F, Fogassi L, Giese MA, Thier P (2013) Mirror neurons in monkey area F5 do not adapt to the observation of repeated actions. Nature Communications 4:1433

Chiovetto E, Giese MA (2013) Kinematics of the coordination of pointing during locomotion. Plos One 8(11)

Synofzik M, Schatton C, Giese MA, Wolf J, Schöls L, Ilg W (2013) Videogame-based coordinative training can improve advanced, multisystemic early-onset ataxia. Journal of Neurology 260(10):2656-2658

Ilg W, Schatton C, Giese MA, Schöls L, Synofzik M (2012) Video game-based coordinative training improves ataxia in children with degenerative ataxia. Neurology 79(20):2056-2060

Caggiano V, Fogassi L, Rizzolatti G, Casile A, Giese MA, Thier P (2012) Mirror neurons encode the subjective value of an observed action. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 109(29);11848-11853

Caggiano V, Fogassi L, Rizzolatti G, Pomper J, Thier P, Giese MA*, Casile A* (*equal contributions) (2011) View-based encoding of actions in mirror neurons of area F5 in macaque premotor cortex. Current Biology 21(2):144-148    

Christensen A, Ilg W, Giese MA (2011) Spatiotemporal tuning of the facilitation of biological motion perception by concurrent motor execution. Journal of Neuroscience 31(9):3493-3499


Ausgewählte Publikationen von 1992-2013 finden sie unter:

Die aktuellen Stellenangebote der Sektion für Theoretische Sensomotorik finden Sie unter

Bachelor/Masterarbeiten: Entwicklung von KINECT Exergames zur motorischen Rehabilitation. Wir bieten mehrere Abschlussarbeiten im Bereich der Spiele-Entwicklung an! In deiner Bachelor oder Master-Arbeit wirst du ein KINECT Spiel zur motorischen Rehabilitation von Patienten selbst entwickeln oder daran beteiligt sein.

Prof. Martin Giese martin.giese(at) Anschrift

Zentrum für Neurologie
Hertie-Institut für klinische Hirnforschung
Abteilung Kognitive Neurologie

Otfried-Müller-Straße 25
72076 Tübingen

Tel.: +49 (0)7071 29-89124
Fax: +49 (0)7071 29-25011


Mirjana Angelovska

Tel.: +49 (0)7071 29-89137