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68 m a s s a g e & b o d y wo r k s e p te m b e r/o c to b e r 2 0 2 2 Spinalis By Christy Cael essential skills | FUNCTIONAL ANATOMY The spinalis is one of three muscles that comprise the erector spinae (erect = upright and spinae = spine) group of muscles. The iliocostalis and longissimus are also part of this group. These muscles span the entire posterior trunk and connect the sacrum, ilium, vertebral column, and skull, running parallel to the vertebral column. The erector spinae group comprises the intermediate layer of muscle on the posterior trunk, found deep to the latissimus dorsi, trapezius, and serratus posterior muscles and superficial to the semispinalis, multifidi, and rotatores. The spinalis is the most medial of the three erector spinae muscles. It extends from the spinous processes of the lower thoracic and upper lumbar vertebrae superiorly to those in the upper thoracic and lower cervical vertebrae. Its fibers run vertically, making it stronger in extension and lateral flexion than rotation compared to the longissimus and iliocostalis. In the cervical spine, the spinalis joins the semispinalis muscle of the transversospinalis group before attaching to the occiput. The semispinalis, multifidi, and rotatores muscles make up the transversospinalis group. Functionally, the spinalis and other erector spinae muscles provide broader stabilization and movement than the deeper transversospinalis group. Together, the erector spinae and transversospinalis groups maintain upright posture of the spine against gravity. The deeper, smaller muscles of the transversospinalis group position individual or pairs of vertebrae, while the more superficial, larger muscles of the erector spinae position broad segments of the vertebral column and initiate and control movements including extension, lateral flexion, and rotation of the trunk. SPINALIS Attachments • Origin: Spinous processes of L2-T11, ligamentum nuchae, and spinous processes of T2-C7 • Insertion: Spinous processes of T1-8 and C2-4 and between the superior and inferior nuchal lines of the occiput Actions • Extends the vertebral column (bilateral action) • Laterally flexes vertebral column toward same side (unilateral action) • Rotates head and neck toward opposite side (unilateral action) Innervation • Spinal nerves Spinalis © 2010 Wolters Kluwer Health Lippincott Willliams & Wilkins.

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