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Ch 11: Muscle Physiology

About This Chapter

Discover the movements, functions, and physiological structure of muscle by going through these lessons. Work on memorizing medical terminology and definitions, or use the lessons to study for an exam or to earn CE units in health or biology.

Muscle Physiology - Chapter Summary

Within the human body are bones, fluids, organs, and tissues, all working together to perform various functions vital to life. These lessons focus on muscle physiology, and our instructors will analyze different types of tissues, their functions, and how they help the body perform movements.

You'll find that each lesson is short in length, but highly informative. Our instructors pack these lessons with the most important information you need, including major terms, definitions, and explanations of key concepts. Go through every lesson of the chapter to gain a deeper understanding of this topic, or pick and choose specific lessons that you need to review. After you have a stronger grasp on muscle physiology, you will possess the skills to:

  • Describe the smooth, cardiac, and skeletal muscle tissues
  • Identify the functions of the major skeletal muscle
  • Analyze layers and connective tissue in the organization of skeletal muscle
  • Check out the sliding filaments and sarcomere in muscular contraction
  • Define excitation-contraction coupling, cross-bridge formation, and related concepts
  • Examine the physiology, structure, and function of the neuromuscular junction
  • Learn about relationships between length and tension
  • Point out muscle tension, wave summation, and muscle twitch
  • Offer examples about muscle tension caused by motor unit summation
  • Review isotonic and isometric contraction
  • Show ATP synthesis within muscle metabolism
  • Determine the functions and types of skeletal muscle fibers

12 Lessons in Chapter 11: Muscle Physiology
Types of Muscle Tissue: Skeletal, Cardiac & Smooth

1. Types of Muscle Tissue: Skeletal, Cardiac & Smooth

Have you ever wondered why muscle has different names such as striated, smooth, voluntary, or involuntary? This lesson describes the different types of muscle tissue based on their histology, mechanism of contraction, and regulation.

Major Skeletal Muscle Functions

2. Major Skeletal Muscle Functions

Did you know that skeletal muscle does more than just move our body parts? This lesson describes how skeletal muscles are used for movement, posture, swallowing, defecation, urination and homeostasis.

Skeletal Muscle Organization: Connective Tissue and Layers

3. Skeletal Muscle Organization: Connective Tissue and Layers

Did you know that skeletal muscles are organized into tightly packed groups? This lesson identifies the connective tissue layers that organize skeletal muscle into fascicles, muscle fibers and myofibrils. Additionally, the microscopic structure of the sarcomere is described.

The Sarcomere and Sliding Filaments in Muscular Contraction: Definition and Structures

4. The Sarcomere and Sliding Filaments in Muscular Contraction: Definition and Structures

Did you know that a sarcomere is the fundamental functional unit of striated muscle? This lesson describes the thick and thin filaments of a sarcomere and how they interact with each other to cause sarcomere shortening and muscular contraction.

Muscular Contraction: Cross-Bridge Formation

5. Muscular Contraction: Cross-Bridge Formation

Did you know that muscles contract as a result of cross-bridge formation between actin and myosin? This lesson describes the stages of cross-bridge cycling and how this results in sarcomere shortening and muscular contraction.

Excitation-Contraction Coupling & Muscular Contraction Regulation

6. Excitation-Contraction Coupling & Muscular Contraction Regulation

Did you know that calcium couples neural stimulation with contraction of skeletal muscle? This lesson describes the role of calcium, troponin, tropomyosin, and ATP in the regulation of muscular contraction. Rigor mortis is explained to help you understand the regulation of contraction as well.

The Neuromuscular Junction: Function, Structure & Physiology

7. The Neuromuscular Junction: Function, Structure & Physiology

A neuromuscular junction is a synapse between a motor neuron and skeletal muscle. This lesson describes the events of synaptic transmission leading to contraction of skeletal muscle. Myasthenia gravis is described as a neuromuscular disease.

Length-Tension Relationship in Skeletal Muscle

8. Length-Tension Relationship in Skeletal Muscle

All skeletal muscles have a resting length. When our muscles are stretched to the ideal length, it can maximize muscular contraction. This lesson explains the length-tension relationship in skeletal muscle and explores how the arrangement of myofilaments in a sarcomere can impact tension and contraction.

Muscle Twitch, Wave Summation & Muscle Tension

9. Muscle Twitch, Wave Summation & Muscle Tension

Did you know that posture results from rapid stimulation of skeletal muscles? This lesson describes the nature of a muscle twitch and explains how individual contractions are added together resulting in tetanus and good posture.

How Motor Unit Summation Develops Muscle Tension

10. How Motor Unit Summation Develops Muscle Tension

Did you know that skeletal muscles are composed of motor units? This lesson describes the nature of a motor unit and how motor unit recruitment regulates whole muscle contraction. Additionally, this lesson describes the effect of strength conditioning on muscle.

Isometric and Isotonic Contraction: Definition and Examples

11. Isometric and Isotonic Contraction: Definition and Examples

Did you know that muscles can contract and not move your limbs? This lesson describes the nature of both isometric and isotonic skeletal muscle contraction. Examples are utilized to help you understand how this works.

Skeletal Muscle Fibers: Types and Functions

12. Skeletal Muscle Fibers: Types and Functions

Did you know most human muscles contain a mixture of fast, slow and intermediate fibers? This lesson describes the structure and function of the three muscle fiber types found in humans.

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