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Meaning of Medial

Medial is used in medical, anatomy, kinesiology, and biology to refer to where parts of the body are located. This is a quick reference video to define the term medial, useful for fitness trainers or other professionals needing to understand this anatomic reference term.

The term medial refers to the middle; in or toward the middle; nearer the middle of the body.
Medial is as opposed to lateral. For example, the medial side of the knee is the side closest to the other knee whereas the lateral side of the knee is the outside of the knee.

Also, in reference to the anatomic position, the side of the body or body part that is nearer to the middle or center (median) of the body, or the median or midsagittal plane. For example, when referring to the knee, medial would mean the side of the knee that is closest to the other knee the opposite of medial is lateral.


The rectus abdominis is medial to the external oblique.

The inside of the wrist is the medial aspect of the wrist, corresponding to the ulna bone of the forearm. A synonym for the medial aspect of the wrist is ulnar, named after the ulna bone.


The opposite of medial is lateral.

Related Terms

Medial is a core anatomic reference term from which other terms are built:

This page created 11 Oct 2011 18:25
Last updated 22 Oct 2017 18:08

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