You’re out jogging and suddenly notice a low-hanging tree branch in your path. You quickly lower your head, narrowly avoiding the branch, and continue on the run without giving it another thought. But how did your brain help you so rapidly and precisely duck out of the way of the branch while running?
Researchers at the University of Michigan have now discovered a very fast brain rhythm that helps your left brain and right brain communicate better as you run faster—and even when you dream.
The fast rhythm linking the left and right halves of the brain has a new name: “splines,” so-called because they visually resemble mechanical splines, the interlocking teeth on mechanical gears.
Omar Ahmed, assistant professor of psychology and lead author of a new study appearing in Cell Reports, says that splines represent a pattern of rhythmic communication across the left and right brain that is different from other known brain rhythms.