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Anatomical Position and Directional Terms

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  1. Anatomical Position and Directional Terms

  2. Anatomical Position (AP) AP is the reference position used to describe the location of anatomical parts and to describe and explain human movement. The subject is: • standing upright with feet flat on the floor • arms at the side of the body • facing the observer • palms are facing forward (supinated)

  3. Anatomical Position

  4. Directional Terms Note: the midline is an imaginary vertical line that divides the body into equal left and right sides Superior: nearer the head • e.g. the heart is superior to the liver Inferior: farther away from the head • e.g. the stomach is inferior to the lungs

  5. Directional Terms Anterior (ventral): nearer to or in front of the body • e.g. the sternum is anterior to the heart Posterior (dorsal): nearer to or at the back of the body • e.g. the esophagus is posterior to the trachea

  6. Directional Terms Medial: closer to the midline of the body • e.g. the ulna is on the medial side of the forearm Lateral: farther away from the midline of the body • e.g. the ear is lateral to the nose in all individuals

  7. Directional Terms Proximal: nearer to the attachment of an extremity (limb) to • the trunk; nearer to the point of origin • e.g. the humerus is proximal to the radius Distal: farther from the attachment of an extremity (limb) to themtrunk; farther away from the point of origin • e.g. the phalanges are distal to the carpals (wrist bones)

  8. Directional Terms Superficial: on or near the surface of the body • e.g. the skin is the most superficial organ of the body Deep: farther away from the surface of the body • e.g. the ribs are deep to the skin of the chest

  9. Planes of Motion and Axes • Biomechanics is the study of human movements through the use of physics. As such, biomechanics has its own language and terminology. The language of biomechanics establishes a common reference system of standard terms. Planes and axes of motion are an important part of this language.

  10. Planes of Motion A plane of motion can be defined as the two dimensional space cut by a moving body or the plane along which movements occur. There are generally three planes used to describe segmental and body movements in physical activity. These are: Sagittal plane • a vertical plane that cuts the body into right and left sides Frontal plane • vertical plane that cuts the body into anterior (front) and posterior (back) parts Transverse plane • horizontal plane that cuts the body into superior and inferior parts

  11. Anatomical Planes

  12. Anatomical Axes An axis is the point about which rotation of a body or of a body segment occurs. There are three axes of rotation. Each axis is associated with a plane of motion and the axis is perpendicular to that plane. Horizontal axis (…think East and West) • passes through the body from side to side • perpendicular to the sagittal plane Antereoposterior axis (axis) • passes through the body from front to back • perpendicular to the frontal plane Longitudinal axis (…think North and South pole) • passes through the body from top to bottom • perpendicular to the transverse plane

  13. Planes & Movements Movements in the sagittal plane around a horizontal axis • (e.g. front roll, back roll, cycling, running) Flexion • flexion at a joint results in a decrease of the angle between the two segments that meet at that joint Extension • extension at a joint results in an increase of the angle between the two segments that meet at that joint • if the movement occurs beyond the extended position, the action is called hyperextension

  14. Examples of flexion and extension • shoulder flexion and extension • elbow flexion and extension • wrist flexion and extension • fingers flexion and extension • hip flexion and extension • knee flexion and extension • ankle dorsi flexion and plantar flexion • tilt of pelvis under • Dorsi flexion: bringing the toes toward the shin • Plantar flexion: pointing the toes away from the shin (toward the floor)

  15. Planes & Movements Movements in the frontal plane around a antereoposterior axis • (e.g. cartwheel, jumping jacks, galloping) Abduction • occurs when a body part is moved away from the midline of the body • e.g. shoulder, hip, fingers Adduction • occurs when a body part is moved toward the midline of the body • e.g. shoulder, hip, fingers • remember “add to your midline” • e.g. shoulder, hip, fingers

  16. Movements & Planes Inversion • Turning the sole of the foot inward at the ankle (so the sole of the foot faces toward the midline) Eversion • turning the sole of the foot outward at the ankle (so the sole of the foot faces away from the midline) Elevation • raising a part to a superior position • e.g. raising your shoulders toward your ears; closing your jaw Depression • lowering a part to an inferior position • e.g. lowering your shoulders to normal or lower than normal position; lowering your jaw to an open position

  17. More… Protraction • Sticking jaw out (pouting) Retraction • Bringing jaw back to anatomical position • Lateral bending • bending of the spinal column in the frontal plane to the left or right • e.g. bending side to side at the waist

  18. And More… Movements in the transverse plane around a longitudinal axis • (e.g. twist, pirouette) Rotation • the movement of a bone around its own axis; this is also known as a pivot • e.g. the head, neck, and trunk can pivot around the longitudinal axis Internal (medial) rotation • Rotation towards the midline • E.g. turning forearn in towards body External (lateral) rotation • Rotation away from midline • E.g. turning forearm away from body

  19. More… Pronation • rotation of the forearm and hand to the palms down position Supination • rotation of the forearm and hand to the palms up position (remember holding a cup of “soup”) Protraction • Shoulder rounding (hunching shoulders) Retraction • Bringing shoulders back to anatomical position, or squeezing shoulder blades together at back

  20. Special movements Circumduction • a combination of abduction, adduction, flexion and extension • this action describes a circle • e.g. moving the shoulder in a circle (swimming, windmill throw in baseball); can also be done at the hip joint Opposition • Bringing thumb towards fingers Reposition • Returning thumb back to anatomical position