Back Muscles

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The back has both superficial muscles near the skin surface, and deep muscles connecting to the vertebrae. The back muscles are powerful muscles providing movement and stability for the trunk and upper body. Read on to learn more about the back muscles, and their role in helping you move your body.

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Vertebral and Stabilizer Muscles
Vertebral and Stabilizer Muscles

The superficial muscles include the trapezius muscle and the latissimus dorsi. The trapezius muscles connect between the neck, shoulders, and the thoracic vertebra. Its main function is to move the scapula and support the arm. The latissimus dorsi, also known as the lats, connect from the shoulder to the hip. They are the largest muscles of the back. They help pull the arm down towards the pelvis, or pull the body up when doing chin up exercises. They also provide stability to the trunk of the body.

The deep back muscles include the intertransversarii and the multifidus spinae muscles. The intertransversarii muscle are small muscles placed between the transverse processes of the vertebrae, and support movement between the individual vertebrae. The multifidus spinae are very thin muscles deep in the spine that stabilize the whole spine. For more information on the deep back muscles, see vertebral muscles.


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