NASM 6th Edition chapter 5 - Human Movement Science
NASM study guide chapter 5

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Chapter 5 NASM study guide

Important Definitions from Chapter 5

Biomechanics: The study of how internal and external forces affect a living body (especially the skeletal system)

The Terminology of Location:

Superior: A position above a point of reference.

Inferior: A position below a point of reference.

Proximal: A position near the center of your body or a point of reference. Your knee joint is more proximal to your hip than your ankle joint.

Distal: A position that is farther away from the center of your body or point of reference. Your ankle is more distal to your hips than your knees are.

Anterior (Ventral): This refers to the front of your body facing forward. Your chest is anterior on your body.

Posterior (Dorsal): This refers to the back of your body. Your back and your hamstrings are posterior.

Medial: This refers to things close to the midline of the body. Your adductors are closer to your body’s midline than your abductors.

Lateral: Positioned on the outside of the body. Your ears are on the lateral side of your head.

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Contralateral: These are things located on the opposite side of your body. Your left foot is contralateral to your right hand.

Ipsilateral: These are things located on the same side of your body. You are left foot is ipsilateral to your left hand.

The Planes of Motion, Joint Motions, and Axes

Anatomic position: The anatomic position is important as a reference point for anatomic nomenclature. The anatomic position is when the body is erect, the arms at your side and your palms facing forward. This way, we can reference what is posterior, anterior, medial, or lateral by referencing this default position.

Sagittal plane: The sagittal plane splits the body into the right and left halves. Extension and flexion are movements in this plane.

Flexion: This is a bending movement where a relative angle between two adjacent sections decreases. It’s easier to imagine two separate reference points. A good example is knee flexion. In this example, the two reference points are your calves and your hamstrings. As knee flexion occurs, the distance between your calves and hand strings decreases as they get closer to one another. As the knee goes into an extension, they move further away from each other, or the relative angle increases with the knee extension and decreases with knee flexion.

Extension: This is the opposite of flexion. As with my knee extension example above, the relative angle between adjacent sections increases.

Hyperextension: This is the extension beyond the normal limits of the body.

Frontal plane: This is a vertical plane with right angles compared to the sagittal plane breaking up the body between frontal and posterior planes.

Abduction: The act that typically moves a limb away from the body’s midline in the frontal plane.

Adduction: The act that typically moves a limb towards the body’s midline in the frontal plane.

Transverse plane: The plane that divides the body into a lower and upper section.

Internal rotation: When a limb rotates in the transverse plane going towards the body’s midline. Suppose looked from a bird’s eye view, a limb moving counterclockwise towards the body’s midline.

External rotation: When a limb rotates in the transverse plane, going away from the body’s midline. If viewed from a bird’s eye view, a limb moves clockwise away from the body’s midline.

Horizontal adduction: Imagine the movement of a chest fly.

Horizontal abduction: Imagine the movement of a rear deltoid fly.

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Scapular motion: The act of moving the shoulder blades away from the midline.

Scapular retraction: The act of moving the shoulder blades toward the midline.

Scapular elevation: The act of elevating the shoulder blades towards the superior.

Scapular depression: The active lowering of the shoulder blades towards the inferior.

The Muscle Actions

Concentric: A concentric muscle action: happens when the shortening of the muscle tissue accompanies the contraction.

Eccentric: An eccentric muscle action: is accompanied by the lengthening of the muscle tissue.

Isometric: In isometric muscle, action is when no change in the length of the muscle happens.

Isokinetic: in isokinetic muscle, action is when the contraction speed of a muscle is constant.

Force: Any movement that results in the speeding up or slowing down of an object.

Length-tension relationships: This is the perfect muscle length that will result in the most force produced. The ability of a muscle to produce force at its current range.

Torque: Something that tends to produce rotation or torsion. The movement of a system or force that typically leads to a rotation.

Rotary motion: This is rotational movements from the joints.

Force couple: Groups of muscles that work with one another to produce a force on a joint.

The Motor Behaviors

Sensorimotor integration: How the muscular and nervous system cooperates to gather and interpret information to execute the movement.

Proprioception: This is the cumulative sensory input to the CNS (Central nervous system) from all of the various mechanoreceptors that can sense limb movement and body position. Proprioception training improves coordination, posture, and balance.

Muscle synergies: Muscles that are controlled by the central nervous system to produce the same movements.

Motor development: The maturation of muscle coordination.

Motor learning: The process of improving one’s motor skills with practice. This results in lasting changes and one’s overall capability of responding.

Motor control: The process where people use cognition to coordinate the muscles and limbs of the body.

Motor behavior: Response to external and internal stimuli from the environment. The overall study of motor development, motor learning, and motor control (a.k.a. movement).

Motor Learning

  • External feedback: This is information that one will get about their performance from external sources. Usually visual, verbal, or written.
  • Internal feedback: This is how you feel after practicing or performing a certain skill.
  • Feedback: This is a biological system where the response or the output affects the initial input. Your sensory system gathers input from your motor system to adapt and learn new motor skills.

The Planes of Motion Again (important!)

NASM 6th Edition chapter 5 - Human Movement Science 1

Frontal:

  • Splits the body into posterior and interior sections
  • The axis of rotation: anterior and posterior
  • Joint motion: abduction and adduction. Ankle inversion and eversion, and lateral flexion.
  • Exercise examples: pull-ups, barbell shoulder press, Hip abduction, and adduction with cable.

Transverse

  • Splits the body into upper and lower sections.
  • The axis of rotation: longitudinal/vertical
  • Joint motion: pronation, supination, internal rotation, external rotation, horizontal abduction/adduction.
  • Exercise examples: trunk rotation, internal rotation, wood chop, horizontal adduction, cable chest fly, horizontal abduction, rear delt fly (machine).

Sagittal

  • Splits the body into right and left halves
  • The axis of rotation: coronal (medial-lateral axis).
  • Joint motion: Extension and flexion
  • Exercise examples: Hamstring curls, bicep curls (barbell), Quadricep extension, skull crushers

Common Force Couples

Hips/Knee extension during walking, running, and stair climbing = gluteus maximus, quadriceps, calf muscles.
Elbow flexion/bicep curls = shortening of the brachioradialis, brachialis, and biceps brachii.

The 3 Types of Levers

NASM 6th Edition chapter 5 - Human Movement Science 2

The first type of lever is where the fulcrum sits directly between the energy moving the weight and the weight itself. Some good examples are scissors, seesaws, crowbars, or a hammer extracting a nail.

The second type of lever is where the fulcrum is at one end, the weight is in the middle and the force is being applied on the other end. Some common levers that use this second type are wheelbarrows, can openers, and staplers.

The third type of lever is where the fulcrum is on one end, the weight is on the other, and the forces are applied in the middle. With this type of lever, more force needs to be applied, but in return, the weight gets moved a much larger distance. Some good examples are a fishing rod, a broom, or a baseball bat.

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NASM 6th Edition chapter 5 - Human Movement Science 3
NASM 6th Edition chapter 5 - Human Movement Science 4
NASM 6th Edition chapter 5 - Human Movement Science 5

NASM flashcards for Chapter 5

NASM 6th Edition chapter 5 - Human Movement Science 5

Tyler Read

Tyler Read, BSc, CPT. Tyler holds a B.S. in Kinesiology from Sonoma State University and is a certified personal trainer (CPT) with NASM (National Academy of sports medicine), and has over 15 years of experience working as a personal trainer. He is a published author of running start, and a frequent contributing author on Healthline and Eat this, not that.

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13 thoughts on “NASM 6th Edition chapter 5 – Human Movement Science”

  1. PTPioneer User

    I believe your internal and external rotation definition is switched on the Chapter 5 study guide. Besides that, great study guide, thank you!

    1. Tyler Read - Certified Personal Trainer with PTPioneer

      Hello Jonathan,
      Thank you for pointing this out to me you are totally correct! Sometimes my dyslexic habits make the best of me especially when I am writing a lot!

      1. PTPioneer User
        Mykal L Harris

        Hi thanks for the resources! I wanted to point out that this is also true for your Quizlet set on this chapter 🙂

  2. PTPioneer User

    Love, love, love this site, so THANK YOU!
    I’m excited about starting the NASM program, hoping to become a personal trainer focusing on older people and those who need modifications. My questions: NASM offers several options ranging from the $600 range all the way up to $1600 range. How necessary are all the materials and support offerings? Trainers at my gym say not necessary, there are tons of resources online if you need them. I’m just worried that I might be missing out if I go bare bones basic because I don’t have a background in fitness, although I have read about health, fitness, exercise, and nutrition every day for the last 15 years, just as a matter of interest. Could you give me an idea whether chances of success are greater if you spend a mint but get everything offered? Or if a person is a good student, is that just a waste of money? Your website is now officially bookmarked on my Favorites bar! Thank you so much!

    1. Tyler Read - Certified Personal Trainer with PTPioneer

      Hey Stacy,
      First of all, thank you for all of the compliments. I am flattered. In terms of the packages from the National Academy of sports medicine, I recommend picking up the self-study package. There is nothing that you are going to be missing except additional study materials from the other bigger more expensive packages. The biggest and most important piece of information that you will have is the primary textbook which comes with all of their programs. If you want additional study help, I definitely recommend checking out Trainer Academy as they will tell you what is the most important topics to focus on in order to pass the exam. Good luck with all the studying and I believe you are going to be a fantastic personal trainer when the time comes.

  3. PTPioneer User

    flash cards for chapter six need work! they are almost all useless! most defenitions have the term in the caption. thank you for the help youre giving me

  4. PTPioneer User

    Hi Tyler,
    Your study guide on this website has been very helpful thus far. I got to chapter 5 to take the quiz, however, the quiz is not displaying. The answer key is though. Any reason as to why?

    1. Tyler Read - Certified Personal Trainer with PTPioneer

      Hey there, sometimes the quizzes have difficulty displaying. They should be working after a couple hours. If not try to use it in an incognito tab or in a different browser.

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