Definition of gastrocnemius in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌɡastrō(k)ˈnēmēəs/
(also gastrocnemius muscle)

noun (plural gastrocnemii /-mēˌī/)

The chief muscle of the calf of the leg, which flexes the knee and foot. It runs to the Achilles tendon from two heads attached to the femur.
Example sentences
  • The gastrocnemius muscle and soleus muscle, via the Achilles tendon, function as the chief plantar flexors of the ankle joint.
  • However, among all the skeletal muscles, the gastrocnemius was probably the most suitable muscle to examine immobilization-induced deconditioning and passive shortening.
  • This exercise focuses on the hamstrings but also involves the gastrocnemius muscles.


Late 17th century: modern Latin, from Greek gastroknēmia 'calf of the leg', from gastēr, gastr- 'stomach' + knēmē 'leg' (from the bulging shape of the calf).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: gas·troc·ne·mi·us

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