This paper introduces some basic concepts of the interdisciplinary field of neuromuscular control, without the intention to be complete. The complexity and multifaceted nature of neuromuscular control systems is briefly addressed. Principles of stability and planning of motion trajectories are discussed. Closed-loop and open-loop control are considered, together with the inherent stability properties of muscles and the geometrical design of animal bodies. Various modelling approaches, as used by several authors in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, Series B, May 1999 issue, such as inverse and forward dynamics are outlined. An introductory overview is presented of the other contributions in that issue.