Procedural muscle memory

by Sajeev

Excellent site and appreciate your efforts to bring in so much stuff here.

I would appreciate if you could give me a clarification. Now, muscle memory is understood to be the way body remembers routine tasks, though I find some difference on opinion where it gets stored (cerebellum or basal ganglia).

My question is: Imagine the two scenarios
1) I reach out to a glass of water unconsciously while I am typing this mail.
2) I get home in the evening and find a glass of water on the table and consciously pick it up and drink.

Though the action involved in these two scenarios is the same, the triggers come from different sources. Internal in the first case and a response to an external cue in the second case.
Is the ‘muscle memory’ stored differently for these two scenarios? Or what’s the difference in the way the brain handles these two actions?

Really appreciate if you could give me some insights.


the view of this website is that the basal ganglia, cerebellum and the spinal cord constitute a hierarchy of programmed controls. Quenching thirst, picking up glass, etc. and the actual muscle movements.

The command to quench thirst could come fom the conscious controls at the prefrontal levels (2), or subconsciously from those regions, which send commands to quench thirst (1).

This an engineering viewpoint. This is not a neuroscience website!


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