Brachioradialis Muscle: Origin, Action & Insertion

Instructor: Dan Washmuth

Dan has taught college Nutrition, Anatomy, Physiology, and Sports Nutrition courses and has a master's degree in Dietetics & Nutrition.

The brachioradialis is a forearm muscle that helps to move the forearm in many different directions. Read the rest of this lesson and get ready to learn all about this important muscle!

Forearm Massage

Try this right where you are:

  1. Bend your right arm at a 90 degree angle with the thumb side of your forearm pointing upward.
  2. With your left fingers, touch the area on the top of your forearm about 1-2 inches above the crease of your elbow.
  3. Now massage this area with your left hand.

This area of the forearm is a common area that gets muscle knots or becomes tight. Do you know what muscle you are massaging? It is the brachioradialis muscle, a muscle that extends the entire length of the thumb side of the forearm.

The brachioradialis is a long, thin muscle located in the forearm.

Origin of the Brachioradialis

The brachioradialis muscle originates from the outer part of the supracondylar ridge of the humerus. The humerus is the bone that is located between the shoulder and the elbow. On the outer, bottom part of the humerus is a round prominence called the lateral epicondyle. Above this round prominence is a raised ridge that is called the supracondylar ridge, and the brachialis begins from this ridge.

The brachioradialis originates from the supracondylar ridge at the lateral, bottom part of the humerus.
lateral supracondylar ridge

Insertion of the Brachioradialis

From the supracondylar ridge, the brachioradialis extends down the thumb side of the forearm and inserts onto the styloid process of the radius. The radius is the long bone on the thumb side of the forearm. At the outer, bottom part of the radius is a small piece of bone that sticks out from the radius. This small piece of bone is called the styloid process of the radius, the insertion point of the brachioradialis.

The brachioradialis muscle inserts onto the styloid process located at the bottom of the radius.
styloid process

Movements of the Brachioradialis

The main movement caused by the brachioradialis is flexion of the forearm. Flexion of the forearm is the movement in which you bring your hand and forearm up towards the shoulder by bending at the elbow. Additionally, this muscle causes the forearm to pronate and supinate. Pronation of the forearm occurs when you turn your forearm in towards the body so the palm is facing down, while supination occurs when you turn your forearm out away from the body so the palm is facing up.

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