The jaw demonstrating lateral movements by pivoting on one condyle while the other glides anteriorly (and inferiorly).

The jaw demonstrating lateral movements by pivoting on one condyle while the other glides anteriorly (and inferiorly).

 Rolling within the hip socket

Rolling within the hip socket

On this page you can see samples of a skeleton I adapted to more closely mimic how humans move. The shapes of the joint surfaces dictate the trajectory of the movement...like the real thing.

Unfortunately, most skeletal models don't operate like this. They are held together rigidly or with mechanical hinges. Bones float in the middle of nowhere. Limbs swing on metal clips. Subtly related structures are fused into undifferentiated blocks. 

This can lead to a poor understanding of how these structures interact and limit our ability to use anatomical models as a teaching tool.

 Roll and glide within the knee

Roll and glide within the knee

I believe  this is important enough to have created the following set of tutorials to functionalize most of the joints of your run-of-the-mill PVC skeleton model. If you are interested in creating one of these models yourself check out the links below:

  1. Parts List
  2. The Jaw
  3. The Foot
  4. The Lower Leg
  5. The Knee
  6. The Hip and Pelvis
  7. The Upper Cervical Spine
  8. The Spine and Rib Cage
  9. The Shoulder
  10. The Hand
  11. The Elbow and Wrist

Best, 

Mac Prible, PT