There space over 600 muscle in the human being body. Discovering the muscular mechanism often involves memorizing details around each muscle, choose where a muscle attaches to bones and how a muscle helps relocate a joint. In textbooks and also lectures these details around muscles are defined using devoted vocabulary that is hard to understand. Right here is one example: The triceps brachii has three bellies v varying origins (scapula and humerus) and also one insertion (ulna). It is a prime mover that elbow extension. The anconeus acts together a synergist in elbow extension.

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What walk all the textbook jargon mean? The triceps brachii has 4 places whereby it attaches come the scapula, humerus, and ulna. This muscle theatre a big role (that’s what prime mover means) in prolonging the elbow share from a bent come a directly position.

Keep reading to find out what every the various other muscle jargon means!

1. Muscles connect to Bones at Locations called Origins and also Insertions


A bones muscle attaches to bone (or sometimes other muscle or tissues) at two or an ext places. If the location is a bone that stays immobile because that an action, the attachment is dubbed an origin. If the place is top top the bone that moves throughout the action, the attachment is called an insertion. The triceps brachii wake up to have four points the attachment: one insertion ~ above the ulna and also three origins (two top top the humerus and one ~ above the scapula).

2. Muscle Act ~ above Synovial Joints to relocate the Body

The muscles bordering synovial joints room responsible for relocating the human body in space. These muscle plot are regularly paired, favor flexion and extension or abduction and also adduction. Below the typical terms are detailed and defined, v animations to help you photo the muscles and joints in motion.

Flexion and also extension are usually activities forward and also backward from the body, such as nodding the head.

Flexion: diminish the angle between two bones (bending).

Extension: increasing the angle in between two skeleton (straightening a bend).

The triceps brachii and also anconeus are muscles that expand the elbow. The biceps brachii, brachialis, and brachioradialis flex the elbow.


Abduction and adduction are usually side-to-side movements, together as moving the arm laterally as soon as doing jumping jacks.

Abduction: relocating away indigenous the body midline.

Adduction: moving toward the body’s midline.

The gluteus medius, gluteus minimus, tensor fasciae latae, and sartorius are muscles that abduct the hip. The pectineus, adductor longus, adductor brevis, adductor magnus, and gracilis adduct the hip.


Pronation and also supination

Describing the rotation of the forearm earlier and forth requires special terms. Spread your fingers out and also look at the palms of her hands and also the fingers and also then revolve your palms come look at her nails. Now look at your palms again. It is forearm supination and pronation.

Pronation: rotating the forearm therefore the palm is facing backward or down.

Supination: rotating the forearm for this reason the palm is facing forward or up.


Elevation and also depression room up-and-down movements, such together chewing or shrugging her shoulders. When you move the mandible down to open the mouth, it is mandible depression. Move the mandible ago up, that’s mandible elevation.

Elevation: relocating a body part up.

Depression: moving a body component down.


Protraction and also retraction

By moving your jaw back and forth in a jutting motion, you are protracting and also retracting your mandible.

Protraction: moving a bone forward without an altering the angle.

Retraction: moving a bone behind without an altering the angle.


Inversion and also eversion

You invert her foot once you turn it inward to check out what is stuck under your shoe. You evert your foot to put the single of her shoe earlier on the floor.

Inversion: turning the sole of the foot inward.

Eversion: transforming the sole of the foot outward.

Dorsiflexion and plantar flexion girlfriend dorsiflex your feet come walk on her heels, and also plantar flex them come tiptoe.

Dorsiflexion: bringing her foot upward toward your shin.

Plantar flexion: depressing your foot.

3. Muscle Actions have actually Prime Movers, Synergists, Stabilizers, and Antagonists


While numerous muscles might be affiliated in any given action, muscle function terminology allows you to conveniently understand the assorted roles various muscles beat in every movement.

Prime movers and also antagonist

The prime mover, sometimes dubbed the agonist, is the muscle that provides the primary pressure driving the action. One antagonist muscle is in opposition to a prime mover in the it gives some resistance and/or reverses a provided movement. Prime movers and antagonists are often paired up on opposite sides of a joint, with their prime mover/antagonist functions reversing together the movement transforms direction.

Synergists. One or an ext synergists space often involved in one action. Synergists room muscles that aid the element mover in the role.

Stabilizers. Stabilizers plot to store bones immobile as soon as needed. Your back muscles, for example, space stabilizers once they are maintaining your posture sturdy.

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External Sources

Muscle Premium by clearly shows Body uses a considerable reference of musculoskeletal structures and also function, plus usual injuries and conditions.

Types the Muscle Contractions. This presentation describes in more detail 3 means that skeletal muscles generate force. University of California, mountain Diego: nationwide Skeletal Muscle research Center. Http://

This table, indigenous a food at Marquette University concentrated on rehabilitation engineering, consists of descriptions of an easy movements and also explanations of vital muscle biomechanics and also movement terminology. Biomechanics & activity Science. Jack M. Winters, Ph.D, Marquette Univeristy. Http://