Directional Terms to Know Just In Case Your Trainer Doesn’t Translate

Have you ever walked into a training session and your trainer says this, “Alright, now we are going to complete an abduction exercise!”, and you’re thinking WTF?!? If you’re not a big gym buff or a health nut I doubt you use these words on a daily basis because why would you? If you just want to lead a healthy lifestyle then these terms do not need to be said daily, but understanding them may help you in the long run to accurately complete exercises, for educational purposes, or to just shock your trainer ๐Ÿ™‚

All the terms below are directional actions that your body will perform in different scenarios or exercises. Our bodies are so complex that most things aren’t as easy as left and right, but these words aren’t too painful or tough; I believe they are very close to common sense standards, so let’s begin!

  • Flexion=bending movement (i.e. bicep curl)
  • Extension=extending (i.e. leg extensions)
  • Hyperextension=over extension or going past 180 degrees (i.e. back extension)
  • Abduction=toward the body
  • Adduction=away from the body
  • Pronation=palms down
  • Supination=palms up
  • Circumlocution=circular movement
  • Elevation=upward movement (jaw up)
  • Depression=downward motion (jaw down)
  • Protraction=forward motion (jaw forward)
  • Retraction=backward motion (jaw backward)
  • Opposition=thumb to finger
  • Repossession=fingers to thumb
  • Eversion=inward motion in regards to the foot
  • Inversion=outward motion in regards to the foot
  • Dorsiflextion=toes pointed up or flexed foot
  • Plantar flexion=toes pointed down or pointed toe

directional term movements

You do these motions daily if you think about it and they are very important to everyday activities, muscle growth, and movement purposes. So, next time your trainer says youโ€™re going to complete flexion you can just flex ๐Ÿ˜‰



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