A 3D skeletal muscle model coupled with active contraction of muscle fibres and hyperelastic behaviour

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77 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents a three-dimensional finite element model of skeletal muscle which was developed to simulate active and passive non-linear mechanical behaviours of the muscle during lengthening or shortening under either quasi-static or dynamic condition. Constitutive relation of the muscle was determined by using a strain energy approach, while active contraction behaviour of the muscle fibre was simulated by establishing a numerical algorithm based on the concept of the Hill's three-element muscle model. The proposed numerical algorithm could be used to predict concentric, eccentric, isometric and isotonic contraction behaviours of the muscle. The proposed numerical algorithm and constitutive model for the muscle were derived and implemented into a non-linear large deformation finite element programme ABAQUS by using user-defined material subroutines. A number of scenarios have been used to demonstrate capability of the model for simulating both quasi-static and dynamic response of the muscle. Validation of the proposed model has been performed by comparing the simulated results with the experimental ones of frog gastrocenemius muscle deformation. The effects of the fusiform muscle geometry and fibre orientation on the stress and fibre stretch distributions of frog muscle during isotonic contraction have also been investigated by using the proposed model. The predictability of the present model for dynamic response of the muscle has been demonstrated by simulating the extension of a squid tentacle during a strike to catch prey.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)865-872
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 11 May 2009


  • Eccentric contraction
  • Finite element method
  • Hill's model
  • Skeletal muscle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Rehabilitation


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