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Lab Assistant Video: Naming Muscles

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 There are over 600 skeletal muscles in the human body. Your instructor will let you know how many of these you're expected to identify. Many muscles are named for their appearance, while others are named for their action, size, location, or position. Structure and other considerations can be used to name a muscle. For example, notice the orbicularis oculi. The prefix orb means fear. So this refers to the muscle shape. An oculi refers to the eye region. This muscle encircles the eye. Here is the rectus abdominis and external oblique. Rectus means straight, and abdominis refers to the abdomen. External indicates these are superficial, while oblique means slanted or diagonal to the midline. Gluteus maximus is named for its size and body location. Gluteus means buttock region, while maximus means it is the largest of the buttocks muscles. The trapezius is named for its shape. It is shaped like a trapezoid. Use of anatomical models in your lab will help you remember the muscles you need to learn. Practice Anatomy Lab, PAL, available in Mastering can also help you with identifying muscles on models and human cadaver images. PAL will correctly pronounce the name of the muscles for you. Learning to pronounce the muscles correctly will help you spell them correctly as well. Levator scapulae.