Vastus Lateralis - Muscle Physiology & Functional Anatomy

Vastus Lateralis Muscle





  • Lateral surface of the femur (upper intertrochanteric line, base of greater trochanter, lateral linea aspera, lateral supracondylar ridge & lateral intermuscular septum)


  • Lateral quadriceps tendon to patella (via ligamentum patellae into tubercle of tibia)

Major Arteries:

  • Femoral artery


Neural Innervation:

  • Posterior division of femoral nerve (L3-L4)

Trigger Points:

Vastus Lateralis Trigger Points





Concentric Functions:

  • Knee extension


Eccentric Functions:

  • Decelerates knee flexion, adduction & internal rotation during heel strike of gait


Isometric Function:

  • Dynamically stabilizes the knee during functional movements


Related Muscles




More Images of the Vastus Lateralis Muscle

Vastus Lateralis of the QuadricepsVastus Lateralis Muscle

Cross Section of Vastus Lateralis Muscle

More Information about the Vastus Lateralis Muscle

The vastus lateralis muscle is one of the 4 muscles in the quadriceps femoris muscle group which includes the rectus femoris, vasus intermedius & vastus medialis.  The vastus lateralis muscle is the largest of the quadriceps femoris muscle group.


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