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Types of Joints

Joints come in many different varieties. While most joints allow much movement, others have limited or no movement. The four different types of joints that allow movement are the ball and socket, hinge, pivot, and glide joints. Attached to the joints are ligaments, tendons, and cartilage to assist in the movement of your body.


Ball and Socket

The ball and socket joint allows your arms and hips to move in many directions. Try it! Up Down, right left, and a full 360° rotation give you a lot of freedom to get you where you want to go! Examples include the shoulder and hip.





Hinge Joint

The bones in the knees, elbows, fingers, and toes move just like the hinges on a door. If you're not quite clear on how they work, find the closest door and swing it back and forth. Notice that movement is somewhat limited, and it can only swing back and forth. Now try the same thing on your knees, elbows, fingers, and toes.




Pivot Joint


The first two vertebrae in your neck and the joint beneath your elbow move in a semicircle motion by twisting against eachother. Try this first by holding your forearm and shoulder stationery, and notice that the bottom part of your arm can move in a semi circle back and forth. You can do the same thing with your vertebrae by holding the lower part of your neck, and rotating you head.





Glide Joint

The bones in the wrists and ankles slide against each other in a gliding motion. Try out this joint by holding either right above your wrist or ankle and moving it to the right and left, and up and down. The gliding joint gives your wrists and ankles lots of freedom so you can really move around


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