Anatomy Essay on Joint Types

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Wesleyan University
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The sternum serves the pivotal role of holding the ribcage and stabilizes the thoracic skeletons. The sternum protects severe vital organs including the venacava, the heart, aorta and thymus gland. It is located along the midline of the body in the thoracic region deep into the human skin. A majority of the critical joints in the body are linked to the sternum because it is the major joining element. Having an understanding of the biomechanical and kinesiological actions of the sternum plays a key role in identifying the joints that are involved in critical body activities. The purpose of this paper is to exemplify six common joints in the body giving their descriptions in detail in relation to sternum as well as illustrations of the joints involved in the movement. Some of the most popular joints in the discussion include:

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1. The Knee Joint - It consists of the tibia and the femur bones. The knee joint is weak and dependent on the ligaments that surround the knee joint. The knee joint has been designed to withstand all forces generated by various body activities. It is stabilized on the anterior side by the quadriceps and the sartorius on the medial side (Oflin et al. 2014). The knee bone does not have a direct relation to the sternum. Rather, it derives its support from the pelvic bones that join the upper part of the body to the legs.

2. Ankle Joint - Talus and tibia bones are the major bones of the ankle joint. The stability of the ankle joint is quite strong as it is surrounded by strong ligaments that ensure they can withstand stress put on it (Ofli et al. 2014). The ankle joint is instrumental in the attainment of stability. The joint is helpful as it provides the primary connection between foot mobility and the stability of the leg and the ankle.

3. Spine - The spine plays a pivotal role in the human body. It is responsible for the protection of the spinal cord, which offers the significant support for all basic movements of the body. The spinal column is made up of five different sections including the cervical, thoracic, sacrum, coccyx and lumbar. The spine is directly related to the sternum as it offers the supports that result into spinal flexion from the spinal column.

4. Shoulder Joint - The shoulder joint is made up of a shallow socket referred to as the glenoid fosa. The shoulder joint is the ball and socket type, which facilitates flexible movements including the flexion, abduction, adduction, lateral and media rotations and circumduction (Ofli et al. 2014). The shoulder joint is not designed to attain ligament stability as it is intended for mobility purposes. The shoulder joint is connected to the shoulder girdle, whose movements include elevation, upwards and downward rotation as well as abduction.

5. Elbow Joint - The elbow joint is made up of the ulna, humerus and radius joints. Its stability is dependent on the bony configuration of the muscles that attach to it. The muscles are critical in stabilizing the elbow joint from its anterior side. The most prominent movements of the elbow joint are extension and flexion movements. Similarly, the relation of the sternum to the elbow joint occurs through the shoulder joint, which links it to the rib cage.

6. The wrist Joint - The major bones of the wrist joint include the ulna and radius. The carpal bones of the hand form a critical component of the wrist joint. The wrist joint is designed to handle flexion, hyperextension, and adduction. The stability of the wrist bone is weak. However, the wrist bone has strong ligaments that are useful for stability. The relationship of the wrist bone to the sternum is linked to the shoulder from the elbow.


Ofli, F., Chaudhry, R., Kurillo, G., Vidal, R., & Bajcsy, R. (2014). Sequence of the most informative joints (smij): A new representation for human skeletal action recognition. Journal of Visual Communication and Image Representation, 25(1), 24-38.

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