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Organization of Neurons

During my ballet class today, I was thinking about how my muscles are so used to the moves we do everyday in class. After taking ballet classes for 15 years, I feel that my muscles have not only developed to give me the most power for dancing, but they are also trained to perform in ways that will be most effective for helping me be a better dancer. My muscles have been turning out for so many years, that when I try to bend them normally when my feet are pointed forward, they try to compensate for the constant turnout and bend inward. My muscles have been trained to do certain ballet moves throughout the years that I have studied ballet; they have memory through repetition. Now, I believe this memory is a reallocation of my neurons not the change of their abilities or formation of new neurons. Nervous tissue does not regenerate as easily as other tissue in the body does, and therefore growing more neurons is not a viable explanation for my muscle memory. As we discussed in class, action potentials are the same throughout the nervous system. This means that there is no specific action potential responsible for the ability of my muscles to do an intricate ballet move without much thought. So, this makes me believe that the organization of these action potentials through repetition affects is responsible for my muscle memory.

Now, what about remembering song lyrics, poems, memorized verses etc.? During my English class last year, we were told to pick a Shakespearean sonnet to memorize and recite for the class. I spent at least a week memorizing a fourteen line poem that I would recite only once in my life, hopefully. My neurons reorganized themselves during that week while I was memorizing the sonnet, and when it came time to recite it in class, I had no problem. A few weeks later, without warning our teacher told us to repeat the sonnet. I stumbled through the first few lines, and could not remember the rest of them. The neurons in my brain, without constant repetition reorganized themselves and went back to their original state, before I had memorized the sonnet.


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