Affordances as constraints on the control of stance

Gary E. Riccio, Thomas A. Stoffregen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

214 Scopus citations


In this article we present an ecological treatment of the control of stance by multi-segment organisms. We treat the organism as a black box, and the organism-environment interaction as a closed-loop system. We argue that different ways of controlling stance can have differing utility (affordances) for perception and action. We further argue that the affordances of a particular control strategy are in part determined by (a) the mechanical properties of the organism, (b) the mechanical properties of the surface on which stance takes place, and (c) the goals of behavior. Our conclusion is that the control of stance is based on, or constrained by, perception of the kinematic consequences, or affordances, of control actions. Finally, we argue that the relationship between affordances and constraints on control actions should be investigated using geometrical methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)265-300
Number of pages36
JournalHuman Movement Science
Issue number2-4
StatePublished - 1988


Dive into the research topics of 'Affordances as constraints on the control of stance'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this