Sensorimotor Areas

Tactile perception (touch) and gross physical movements are coordinated by the sensorimotor areas of the brain

  • The primary motor cortex is located in the precentral gyrus (frontal lobe) and handles motor signals
  • The somatosensory cortex is located in the postcentral gyrus (parietal lobe) and handles tactile sensory signals

These two regions each form a cortical homunculus – a neurological map of the anatomical divisions of the body

  • Parts of this representation of the human body are disproportionately large as these regions are highly innervated
  • The hands, tongue and lips are very large as these appendages require more nervous control (e.g. for speech)
  • Areas with less innervation (e.g. torso) have less of the cortex dedicated to their functioning and appear small

Cortical Homunculus of the Sensorimotor Areas