The monkey premotor cortex contains neurons that discharge during action execution and during observation of actions made by others. Transcranial magnetic stimulation experiments suggest that a similar observation/execution matching system also is present in humans. We recorded neuromagnetic oscillatory activity of the human precentral cortex from 10 healthy volunteers while (i) they had no task to perform, (ii) they were manipulating a small object, and (iii) they were observing another individual performing the same task. The left and right median nerves were stimulated alternately (interstimulus interval, 1.5 s) at intensities exceeding motor threshold, and the poststimulus rebound of the rolandic 15- to 25-Hz activity was quantified. In agreement with previous studies, the rebound was strongly suppressed bilaterally during object manipulation. Most interestingly, the rebound also was significantly diminished during action observation (31-46% of the suppression during object manipulation). Control experiments, in which subjects were instructed to observe stationary or moving stimuli, confirmed the specificity of the suppression effect. Because the recorded 15- to 25-Hz activity is known to originate mainly in the precentral motor cortex, we concluded that the human primary motor cortex is activated during observation as well as execution of motor tasks. These findings have implications for a better understanding of the machinery underlying action recognition in humans.