Scalenes - Muscle Physiology & Functional Anatomy


Scalene Muscle




  • Anterior: Transverse processes of cervical vertebrae C3-C6

  • Medial: Transverse processes of cervical vertebrae C2-C7

  • Posterior: Transverse processes of cervical vertebrae C5-C6



  • Anterior: 1st rib

  • Medial: 1st rib

  • Posterior: 2nd rib

Major Arteries:

  • Ascending cervical artery

  • Branch of inferior thyroid artery


Neural Innervation:

  • Cervical nerves C3-C8


Trigger Points:

Trigger Points of the Scalene Muscles




Concentric Functions:

  • Flexion & rotation of the (cervical spine) neck

  • Accelerates lateral flexion of the (cervical spine) neck


Eccentric Functions:

  • Decelerates lateral flexion of cervical spine, cervical rotation & extension


Isometric Function:

  • Dynamic stabilization of the spine during functional movements


Related Muscles




  • Neck exercises



More Images of the Scalene Muscles

Scalene Muscle



More Information about the Scalene Muscles

The scalene muscles are are a group of 3 pairs of muscles in the lateral neck named the scalenus anterior, scalenus medius, and scalenus posterior.  Scalene muscles are also the lateral vertebral muscles.

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