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gastrocnemius Line breaks: gastro|cne¦mius
Pronunciation: /ˌɡastrə(ʊ)ˈkniːmɪəs/
(also gastrocnemius muscle)

Definition of gastrocnemius in English:

noun (plural gastrocnemii ˌɡastrə(ʊ)ˈkniːmɪʌɪ)

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 gaster, gastr- 'stomach' + knēmē 'leg' (from the bulging shape of the calf).

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