Muscle Origin

Occipital bone, C-7, all thoracic vertebrae to spine of scapula, acromion, lateral 1/3 of clavicle.anatomy-model-muscles-back-029-edited 3

Upper part: External occipital proturberance, medial third of the superior nuchal line, the ligamentum nuchae, and the spinous process of C7.
Medial Part: Spinous processes of T1 to T5.
Lower Part: Spinous processes of T6 to T12.


External occipital protuberance, nuchal ligament, medial superior nuchal line, posterior border of the lateral third of the clavicle, acromion process, and spine of scapula.

Upper Part: Lateral third of the clavicle and the medial aspect of the acromion process of the scapula
Middle Part: Medial edge of the superior surface of the acromion process of the scapula and the superior edge of the scapular spine.
Lower Part: Tubercles of the apex of the scapular spine.


Upward rotate and adducts the scapula.

It adducts, rotates, retracts and stabilizes the scapula; it draws back the acromion and when acting unilaterally, extends the head and neck while assisting in cranial rotation to the opposite side. American Academy of Manual Medicine

Innervation – Nerve control

Cervical artery
Nerve accessory nerve (motor)
cervical spinal nerves C3 and C4 (motor and sensation).

Motor function is supplied by the accessory nerve (CN XI). Sensation, including pain and proprioception, travel via the ventral rami of the third (C3) and fourth (C4) cervical nerves. Since it is a muscle of the upper limb, the trapezius is not innervated by dorsal rami despite being placed superficially in the back. Wiki


Superficial branch of transverse cervical artery or superficial cervical artery.

The transverse cervical artery, also known as the transverse artery of neck or transversa colli artery, is an artery in the neck and a branch of the thyrocervical trunk, running at a higher level than the suprascapular artery.

Antagonist muscles

Serratus anterior muscle, Latissimus dorsi.

Deltoid, Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus, Teres major, Teres minor, Subscapularis.

Pictures of muscles


Trigger Point Referrals


Stretching description








Additional Resources
Sports Lab
American Academy of Manual Medicine

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