A joint is a part of the body that links two or more bones together. Different joints allow movement in different parts of the body. Joints are essential for allowing movement in different parts of the body, as they enable bones to pivot, rotate, and glide relative to one another.

synovial joint is the most common type of joint in the body. It allows for a wide range of movement between bones. Synovial joints are found in a variety of locations throughout the body, including the hip, shoulder, elbow, and knee. They are essential for enabling movement in the body and are essential for maintaining flexibility and mobility.

Some examples of synovial joints are:

  • Pivot joints – Only allow rotary movement around a single axis (e.g. joints in the neck)
  • Hinge joints – Only allow movement in two directions (e.g. elbow and knee joints)
  • Ball and socket joints – Allows movement in all directions, within certain limits (e.g. shoulder and hip joints)

The diagram below shows a synovial joint.

Fixed joints are a type of joint that does not allow for movement between the bones. For example, the joints between the bones in the skull. Fixed joints play an important role in providing stability and support to the body. This is because they allow the bones to remain in place, protecting vital organs and maintaining the body’s structure.

The Anatomy of Movement

Bones cannot move on their own, they require muscles for movement. Muscles are a type of tissue that is responsible for movement in the body. They are connected to bones by tendons, which are tough, fibrous cords. Tendons transmit the force generated by muscle contractions to the bones.

At the point where two bones meet, there is a layer of cartilage, which is a type of connective tissue that covers the ends of the bones. Tendons act as a cushion to prevent them from rubbing against one another. Cartilage also helps to absorb shock and reduce the wear and tear on the joints.

Synovial fluid also helps to reduce friction and allows the joints to move freely. This fluid is produced by the synovial membrane, and it acts as a lubricant to enable smooth movement between the bones.

Ligaments are strong, flexible bands of connective tissue, that play a role in stabilising the joints by connecting the bones together and helping to prevent them from dislocating.