Login
Copyright

Bones of the Shoulder: Anatomy and Functions

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: Bones of the Leg and Foot: Names, Anatomy & Functions

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
 Replay
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:08 The Shoulder
  • 0:41 The Humerus
  • 1:04 The Glenoid Cavity
  • 2:21 The Scapula
  • 2:39 The Clavicle
  • 2:53 The Acromion
Timeline
Autoplay
Autoplay
Create an account to start this course today
Try it free for 5 days!
Create An Account
Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Artem Cheprasov
Did you know that your shoulder joint is made up of many different parts? In this lesson, you'll learn about the clavicle, scapula, glenoid cavity, and acromion, as well as some of their more common names.

The Shoulder

The humerus is the main portion of your upper arm
Humerus Bone Location

Baseball players seem to suffer from a lot of shoulder injuries. Of course they do! They constantly rotate it back and forth over and over again. This shouldn't come as a surprise. The reasons for the shoulder injuries are as numerous as the structures involved in forming your shoulder joint. In this lesson, we'll mention the main bones involved in forming your shoulder. These three main bones of the shoulder are called the humerus, scapula, and clavicle.

The Humerus

The humerus is the bone which extends from your shoulder down to your forearm. It's basically the bone that makes up your upper arm. At the very top of the humerus, the end nearest your head, is something called the humeral head, and it kind of looks like a ball of sorts; and this distinction will be important to remember in just a little bit.

The Glenoid Cavity

This humeral head articulates with, or moves around in, a structure called the glenoid cavity. The glenoid cavity is a part of the scapula that articulates with the head of the humerus. The word 'glene' in 'glenoid' refers to the fact that it's a socket. Hence, the socket of the glenoid cavity articulates with the ball of the humerus. Therefore, the main portion of the shoulder joint is called a ball and socket joint.

The humeral head fits into the glenoid cavity socket
Glenoid Cavity Humerus Head

The smooth semi-circular humeral head, the ball, fits into the concave structure of the glenoid cavity, the socket. The fit is like a key, the humeral head, to a lock, the glenoid cavity; however, it has much less rigidity. These properties are what allow for the movement of your shoulder up, down, forwards, backwards, and in virtually any direction whatsoever with little impediment. It is this anatomy that allows for a baseball player to move his arm in an arc-like motion to throw the perfect curve ball that will lead to the batter striking out!

The Scapula

As you just heard, the glenoid cavity is part of something called the scapula, which is a structure that connects the humerus to the clavicle and is more commonly called the shoulder blade. It sort of looks like the blade of a shovel and hence the name: 'shoulder blade.'

The Clavicle

In addition, as I just mentioned, the scapula connects the humerus to the clavicle, which is a bone that connects to the scapula and sternum and is more commonly known as the collar bone.

The Acromion

The location of the clavicle bone in the shoulder area
Clavicle

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register for a free trial

Are you a student or a teacher?
I am a teacher
What is your educational goal?
 Back

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 10 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 79 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 2,000 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it free for 5 days!
Create An Account
Support