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Old 09-23-2012, 09:08 PM   #1
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ali Ali
Champaign, US
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3
Basic Anatomy question from a beginner

Hello everyone,

I was wondering if someone understands how the tricep muscles work and can explain it to a beginner. Here goes: In the picture below, I see that the tricep long head is larger than the tricep lateral head. It seems like the white tendon takes up most of the tricep lateral head... why?

I actually thought it'd look like the bicep muscle, a sort of easy rectangle, but it isn't. There's a tendon "carving" into it.... more into one of the muscles.

What's going on? Please explain it in layman terms.

Thank you.
Old 09-24-2012, 01:23 AM   #2
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Steven Stahlberg
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Streamline Studios
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
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I'm not really understanding your question, part of it I think is the terrible drawing you're referencing. Try these ones instead, much clearer.

I think you're referring to the fact that the triceps is asymmetrical and has a large piece of connective tissue in the middle, and it seems you're asking why this is. Impossible to answer really, if you think about it, why are the abs divided in a 6 pack with connective tissue between the bulges? Why are the soleus and gastrocnemius not the same size and shape? And the quads, etc etc. I think maybe you're overthinking this.
Old 09-24-2012, 03:04 AM   #3
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ali Ali
Champaign, US
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3
Oh geez, I was not ready for that youtube link... I thought I was "man" enough to handle but reality can be a wee bit harsh.

Anyways, Stahlberg, thank you, you did understand my question even with my poor wording and pic. It really was me just asking "why is the bicep asymmetrical?"

And yeah, these kinds of things are hard to conclude why... I guess I was wondering only because the bicep's shape is easy to understand. I see the bicep as a simple bulge and symmetrical thing as long as I'm not trying too hard. Yet the opposite muscle isn't.

(Man, I swear, if I had like a dollar for every time I hear someone say to me things along the lines of "you worry too much" "you're overthinking it"....... just gotta keep working on that )
Old 01-19-2013, 07:38 AM   #4
Joseph Francis
VFX Supervisor
Los Angeles, USA
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 382

This is my understanding of how the two most visible heads of the triceps share the humerus. The lateral head starts fully ON the humerus, and then fully leaves it.

The long head starts fully OFF the humerus, then comes to be fully ON the bone.

The bone seems to travel diagonally under the two muscle heads as they trade places. They don't share the humerus equally.
Old 01-19-2013, 07:39 AM   #5
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