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Old 05-08-2011, 03:31 PM   #1
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Default Bicep Exercises - Videos & Description

Bicep Exercises - Videos & Description

* Barbell Drag Curl
* Bicep Curl Machine
* Cable Curls
* Concentration Curl
* EZ Bar Curl
* Hammer Curls
* Preacher Bench Curl
* Seated Barbell Curl
* Seated Dumbbell Curl
* Standing Barbell Curl
* Standing Dumbell Curl
* Zottman Curl

In human anatomy, the biceps brachii, or simply biceps in common parlance, is, as the name implies, a two-headed muscle located on the upper arm. Both heads arise on the scapula and join to form a single muscle belly which is attached to the upper forearm. While the biceps crosses both the shoulder and elbow joints, its main function is at the latter where it flexes the elbow and supinates the forearm. Both these movements are used when opening a bottle with a corkscrew: first biceps unscrews the cork (supination), then it pulls the cork out (flexion). [1]


The term biceps brachii is a Latin phrase meaning "two-headed [muscle] of the arm", in reference to the fact that the muscle consists of two bundles of muscle, each with its own origin, sharing a common insertion point near the elbow joint. The proper plural form of the Latin adjective biceps is bicipites, a form not in general English use. Instead, biceps is used in both singular and plural (i.e., when referring to both arms).

The English form bicep [sic], attested from 1939, is a back formation derived from interpreting the s of biceps as the English plural marker -s.[2][3] While common even in professional contexts, it is often considered incorrect.[4]

Origin and insertion

Proximally (towards the body), the short head of the biceps attaches to (originates from) the coracoid process at the top of the scapula. The long head originates on the supraglenoid tubercle just above the shoulder joint from where its tendon passes down along the intertubercular groove of the humerus into the joint capsule of the shoulder joint. [1] When the humerus is in motion, the tendon of the long head is held firmly in place in the intertubercular groove by the greater and lesser tubercles and the overlying transverse humeral ligament. During the motion from external to internal rotation, the tendon is forced medially against the lesser tubercle and superiorly against the transverse ligament. [5]

Both heads join on the middle of the humerus, usually near the insertion of the deltoid, to form a common muscle belly. Distally (towards the fingers), biceps ends in two tendons: the stronger attaches to (inserts into) the radial tuberosity on the radius, while the other, the bicipital aponeurosis, radiates into the ulnar part of the antebrachial fascia. [6]

Two additional muscles lie underneath the biceps brachii. These are the coracobrachialis muscle, which like the biceps attaches to the coracoid process of the scapula, and the brachialis muscle which connects to the ulna and along the mid-shaft of the humerus.


Traditionally described as a two-headed muscle, biceps brachii is one of the most variable muscles of the human body and has a third head arising from the humerus in 10% of cases (normal variation) most commonly originating near the insertion of the coracobrachialis and joining the short head but four, five, and even seven supernumerary heads have been reported in rare cases. [7] The distal biceps tendons are completely separated in 40% and bifurcated in 25% of cases. [8]


Biceps brachii is innervated by the musculocutaneous nerve together with coracobrachialis and brachialis; like the latter, from fibers of the fifth and sixth cervical nerves. [9]


The biceps is tri-articulate, meaning that it works across three joints.[10] The most important of these functions is to supinate the forearm and flex the elbow.

These joints and the associated actions are listed as follows in order of importance:[11]

* Proximal radioulnar joint (upper forearm) - Contrary to popular belief, the biceps brachii is not the most powerful flexor of the forearm, a role which actually belongs to the deeper brachialis muscle. The biceps brachii functions primarily as a powerful supinator of the forearm (turns the palm upwards). This action, which is aided by the supinator muscle, requires the elbow to be at least partially flexed. If the elbow, or humeroulnar joint, is fully extended, supination is then primarily carried out by the supinator muscle.
* Humeroulnar joint (elbow) - The biceps brachii also functions as an important flexor of the forearm, particularly when the forearm is supinated. Functionally, this action is performed when lifting an object, such as a bag of groceries or when performing a biceps curl. When the forearm is in pronation (the palm faces the ground), the brachialis, brachioradialis, and supinator function to flex the forearm, with minimal contribution from the biceps brachii.
* Glenohumeral joint (shoulder) - Several weaker functions occur at the glenohumeral, or shoulder, joint. The biceps brachii weakly assists in forward flexion of the shoulder joint (bringing the arm forward and upwards). It may also contribute to abduction (bringing the arm out to the side) when the arm is externally (or laterally) rotated. The short head of the biceps brachii also assists with horizontal adduction (bringing the arm across the body) when the arm is internally (or medially) rotated. Finally, the long head of the biceps brachii, due to its attachment to the scapula (or shoulder blade), assists with stabilization of the shoulder joint when a heavy weight is carried in the arm.


The biceps can be strengthened using weight and resistance training. An example of a well known biceps exercise is the simple biceps curl.

Evolutionary variation

In Neanderthals, the radial bicipital tuberosities were larger than in modern humans, which suggests they were probably able to use their biceps for supination over a wider range of pronation-supination. It is possible that they relied more on their biceps for forceful supination without the assistance of the supinator muscle like in modern humans, and thus that they used a different movement when throwing. [12]
See also: Neanderthal anatomy and Equine anatomy

In the horse, the biceps' function is to extend the shoulder and flex the elbow. It is composed of two short-fibred heads separated longitudinally by a thick internal tendon which stretches from the origin on the supraglenoid tubercle to the insertion on the medial radial tuberosity. This tendon is capable to withstand very large forces when the biceps is stretched. From this internal tendon a strip of tendon, the lacertus fibrosus, connects the muscle with the extensor carpi radialis -- an important feature in the horse's stay apparatus (through which the horse can rest and sleep whilst standing.) [13]
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