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Anatomy Of The Elbow Joint

By Jayton Miller

The anatomy of the weenus as many middle schoolers like to call it aka the anatomy of the elbow is quite interesting. Being one of the most stable joints in the body this synovial joint has many different parts you wouldn’t expect. Let’s take a look at what they are...


Other Names For The Elbow:

Other Names For Elbow 

The elbow is also known by several other names such as:

  • funny bone
  • crazy bone
  • half turn
  • crook
  • crutch
  • fork
  • hinge
  • bow
  • bend
  • corner

no matter what you call it, this part of the arm is a fascinating phenomenon that is worth knowing about.

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Structure And Function Of The Elbow:

Structure & Function Of The Elbow Joint

The elbow is a synovial joint that is the connection point of the upper and lower parts of the arm. This means the elbow is a fluid filled joint In the elbow the humerus (upper bone of the arm) attaches to both the radius and the ulna (forearm bones). The anatomy of the elbow is as follows:

  • Humerus - Upper arm bone
  • Radius - Forearm bone
  • Ulna - Forearm bone
  • Capitulum - Connects the humerus to head of the radius.
  • Head of Radius - Connects to capitulum from radius.
  • Coronoid Process Of Ulna - attachment point for ulna collateral ligament and brachialis muscle.
  • Trochlea - Pulley shaped bone at lower end of humerus
  • Medial and Lateral Epicondyles of Humerus - Protrusion of the humerus
  • Olecranon Fossa - Hollow area that fits the olecranon of the ulna
  • Olecranon Of Ulna - provides support when arm is straightened

The elbow only has two paths of movement, flexion (like doing a bicep curl) and extension (like flexing your tricep muscle or straightening your arm out completely. As the arm straightens out it is stopped by the insertion of the olecranon of the ulna into the olecranon fossa.

The elbow also consists of many different supporting ligaments including but not limited to:

  • Biceps Brachii Tendon
  • Oblique Chord
  • Ulnar Collateral Ligament
  • Triceps Brachii Tendon

These ligaments provide support and strength in order to help keep the joint together.

Common Issues Of The Elbow Joint:

Common Issues With The Elbow Joint

Some of the most common issues that tend to happen to the elbow are:

  • Arthritis
  • Bursitis
  • Fractures
  • Strains

The elbow is most commonly injured in sports or activities that require a lot of use of the upper body. Taking steps to strengthen the muscles around the elbow is always a great idea.

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Helpful Ways To Support Healthy Elbows:

Helpful Ways To Support Elbow Health

Keeping your elbows healthy doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are some easy ways to support proper elbow health:

  • Strengthening The Muscles Around The Elbow - Strengthening the muscles around the elbow is going to help prevent a lot of possible injuries. These muscle include the biceps, triceps, and forearm muscles.
  • Pronation And Supination Exercises - This simply means turning your hand from palm up (supination) to palm down (pronation). Adding weight to this can acts as a great forearm workout and elbow strengthening exercise.


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The anatomy of the elbow is fascinating. The elbow is one of the most stable joints that is on the body, and it plays an important role in nearly everything we do on a daily basis. Knowing the anatomy of the elbow can help you take steps to keep it strong and healthy to avoid potential problems later in life.


  • Abrahams, Peter. The Human Body: An Essential Guide To How The Body Works. Amber Books Ltd, 2021.