Sensorimotor rhythm

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File:Eeg SMR.svg The Sensory Motor Rhythm (SMR) is also called mu rhythm (find a more detailed article there). It is a 12 - 15 Hz oscillatory spindle rhythm of the EEG, MEG, and ECoG that appears over the sensorimotor cortex.

It is associated with a reduction of motor output and sensory input. It is thought by some that people with learning disabilities,[1] ADHD,[citation needed] epilepsy,[citation needed] and autism[citation needed] may benefit from an increase in SMR activity via biofeedback/neurofeedback. Neurofeedback practitioners believe - and have produced experimental evidence to back up their controversial claims[2] - that regulation of the SMR can be learned. The existence of the SMR spindle is not well known outside of neurofeedback circles.

Phenomenologically, when a person is producing high amounts of SMR they are in a calm and alert state of consciousness.

See also


  1. PMID 6542077
  2. Tobias Egner and M. Barry Sterman, “Neurofeedback treatment of epilepsy: From basic rationale to practical application,” in press

Further Reading

  • Robbins, Jim (2000). A Symphony in the Brain.
  • M. B. Sterman and W. Wyrwicka, “EEG correlates of sleep: Evidence for separate forebrain substrates,” Brain Research, vol. 6, 1967, pp. 143–163.
  • W. Wyrwicka and M. B. Sterman, “Instrumental conditioning of sensorimotor cortex eeg spindles in the waking cat,” Physiology and Behavior, vol. 3, 1968, pp. 703–707.
  • Warren, Jeff (2007). "The SMR". The Head Trip: Adventures on the Wheel of Consciousness. ISBN 978-0679314080.