Main menu


How your muscular system works.

How your muscular system works.

The muscular system is made up of over 600 muscles while we won't be covering all 600 individual muscles in this article, we will be discussing the main functions of the muscular system, the five major properties, the five types of muscle movements, three types of muscles, and how all of this works together to make up what we know as the muscular system.

The primary purpose for the muscular system is to provide movement for the body, now these muscles receive their ability to move through the nervous system, there are five major properties to the muscular system.

  • Number one muscles are excitable or irritable.

This means that they are capable of receiving stimulation and responding to stimulation from the nerves - they are contractable after receiving stimulation they are capable of contracting or shortening being extensible means a muscle can be stretched without damage by the application of force with elasticity, a muscle is able to return to its original resting shape and length after being extended or contracted the muscular system is adaptable in that it can be changed in response to how it is used for example a muscle will enlarge or undergo hypertrophy with increased work but on the other hand it can go into atrophy or waste away, if deprived of work.

Let's look at the five types of muscle movements.

Adduction is the moving of a body part toward the midline of the body, abduction is moving a body part away from the body, flexy on means bending a joint to decrease the angle between two bones or two body parts, extension is straightening and extending of the joint to increase the angle between two bones or body parts, and lastly rotation involves moving a body part around an axis.

The muscular system is divided into three main types of muscles and each of these types can be moved by one of two ways either voluntary or involuntary, the cardiac muscle is an involuntary muscle meaning it operates without any conscious control these muscles form the walls of the heart and contracts to circulate the blood the visceral are smooth muscles are also considered involuntary, these muscles are found in organs or organ systems such as the digestive or respiratory system.

The third type of muscle is the skeletal muscle these are what we typically think of when talking about muscles these muscles attach to the skeleton and provide the skeleton with the ability to move, the skeletal muscles are classified as voluntary this is because we have to make a conscious effort or decision to make them move although muscles obviously make up the muscle system, there are still some supportive structures that we need to look at that are also a necessary part of the system tendons and fascia are important supportive structures for the skeletal muscles, simply put tendons are what attach a muscle to a bone and fascia connects muscles to other muscles tendons and fascia work together with muscles, which create the muscular system necessary for movement while not technically part of the same system the nervous system is intrinsically connected to the muscular system of the body it is essential to the voluntary skeletal muscles if the communication from the nervous system is severed from the skeletal muscles, the skeletal muscles will not be able to produce movement for the body, the body is now in a state of paralysis this is known as quadriplegic the only organ that is not directly dependent upon the nervous system is the cardiac or heart muscle now there is so much more to discuss about the muscular system but that's as far as we'll go.

You should at least have a basic understanding of what makes up the muscular system its properties and functions for more in-depth study of the muscular system look for future article where we will cover topics such as the 14 major muscle groups as well as topics such as common diseases and conditions specific to the muscular system.