A Canadian research team from the University of Western Ontario had found out that it is possible to learn complex physical actions by observing others.
The study used a robot arm to show how to perform complex mechanical tasks to a group of people. When the video of this learning process was shown to a group, they learned to do the same action in less time than the people in the video. Moreover people who learned the same mechanical actions in a different setting performed in a worse manner.
The researchers have concluded that learning to acquire a new skill is not based on conscious thinking but is more due to implicit meeting of neural systems in planning and controlling of movements.
When people see others learn from the exercise, the information gets noted in the brain and later the information is used to assimilate one's own situation accurately.
Experts say that the findings of the study, which was published in the new issue of the journal Neuron, may be used in treating movement disorders like Dyspraxia that affect a good many number of children each year.
Reference: Neuron, issue April 2005