Upper Back Muscles

At the home page of this website, you can find detailed information about the muscles of the back including the upper muscles of the back. According to the classifications of muscles of the back, these are divided into the 3 types of muscles upper muscles or superficial muscles, intermediate muscles, and deep intrinsic muscles of the back. Today in this article we are going to discuss these muscles one by one.

Superficial or Upper Muscles Back

You can find upper muscles of the back just under the skin. These types of muscles begin from the vertebral column and go up to the shoulder bones

  • Clavicle.
  • Scapula.
  • Humerus.

The upper muscles of the back are strongly associated with the upper limb movement. the group of upper muscles consists of the following type of muscles.

  • Trapezius
  • Latissimus Dorsi.
  • Levator Scapulae
  • Rhomboids.

The first two (Trapezius & Latissimus Dorsi) coves lying with the covering of levator scapular and rhomboids. Let’s explore these upper muscles of the back one by one.

Trapezius Upper Muscles of back

Due to its triangular shape it is named as Trapezius muscles. These are quite flat & triangular. It is available at the most superficial level as compared to other trapezius muscles of back.

Origins The Trapezius Upper muscles of back start from the skull, ligamentum nuchae, and spinous processes C7 to T12.
Fibers The fibers of Trapezius muscles attached to Clavicle, Acromion&Scapula Spine
Innervation Receive & pass the messages from accessory nerves from C3 & C4 process of spinal nerves.
Actions The upper fibers rotates & elevate the scapula. The Middle fibers retract the scapula. Lowe fibers pull the Scapula inferiorly.

Latissimus Dorsi

These type of upper muscles of back cover up a wide area of back. Originated from the lower part of back.

Origins Latissimus Dorsi covers a wide area of back that’s why start from Spinous Processes of T6 to T12. Iliac Crest. Thoracolumbar Fascia. Inferior three ribs.
Fibers The fibers of these types of muscles extends to the tendons of back which attached to the intertubercular sulcus of humerus.
Innervation Thoracodorsal nerve.
Actions Associate to rotate the upper limbs of back.

Levator Scapulae

In our back the Levator Scapulae are the strap type muscles which begins from out neck goes up through the scapula.

Origins The Levator Scapulae starts from the transverse processes of C1 to C4 and goes to the medial border of Scapula.
Innervation Thoracodorsal nerve.
Actions Associate to the elevation of Scapula.


Rhomboids are further classified into 2 types. The major rhomboids and the minor Rhomboids. It is really beneficial to describe both of them one by one.

Major Rhomboids

Origins The major Rhomboids originates from the spinal processes T2 to T5 attached the medial border of scapula between the scapula spine & inferior angle.
Innervation Dorsal Scapular Nerve.
Actions Help in Retracts of Scapula. Help in Rotating the Scapula.

Minor Rhomboid

Origins The Minor Rhomboid originates from the spinal processes of C7 to T1 & goes through the medial border of scapula at scapula spine.
Innervation Dorsal Scapular Nerve.
Actions Helps in the Elevation of Scapula.

Meta Description – Read about the upper muscles of the back & find out what kind of muscles these are and how to avoid pain in back muscles. Must find out Upper Muscles of the back.

You can get more information about muscles: we have shared links below. Follow links to get more information.

Back Muscles Diagrams
Muscles in the Back
Muscles Spasm in the Chest
Upper Back Pain
Upper Left Back Pain