The infamous rectus abdominis muscle
There has always been a fascination with the rectus abdominis muscle. It has been popularly called “the six pack muscle”, even though there are technically eight sections created within this muscle. It’s also been popularly debated regarding how it relates to the word core and whether or not strength in this muscle is related to back pain. If you’ve been curious about this muscle, read on. Because, in this post we a look at the muscle along with its attachments and actions.
What does the name rectus abdominis muscle mean?
Rectus is the Latin word for straight. Abdominis of course, refers to the abdomen. The rectus abdominis, specifically, is the straight abdominal muscle that we’re all familiar with.
Where does the rectus abdominis muscle attach?
It’s important to recognize that the origin and insertion of the rectus abdominis can change depending on the movement. Because of the long area it covers and the strength necessary, it’s compartmentalized into little packets. This is what we refer to as the six pack. Technically there are four compartments on each side.
Generally, it’s considered to originate on the pubic symphysis.
It inserts onto the costal cartilages 5, 6, & 7 and the xiphoid process.
What actions does the rectus abdominis muscle do?
The rectus abdominis acts to flex the trunk and compress the abdominal contents. In the case of these abdominal muscles, stabilization is a key function.