The human body consists of hundreds of muscles, which come in all different shapes and sizes. Each muscle’s particular structure allows it to perform a specific function.
The muscles are attached to bones or other tissues, to help us maintain position, perform movements and even protect some organs.
Ok, now muscle tissue is made up of contractile cells, often called muscle fibers. Muscle tissue can be grouped into 3 types; skeletal, cardiac and smooth muscle.
Skeletal muscles connect to the skeleton and other structures like the eyes to help with movement and stability of the body.
These muscles are voluntary, meaning that we have active control of them to perform movements, like flexing your elbow.
Cardiac muscle is the muscle tissue that makes up the walls of the heart. These muscles contract in a rhythmic way to pump blood to the whole body and they are involuntary meaning that we can’t consciously control this type of muscle.
Lastly, is smooth muscle, which mainly lies in the walls of blood vessels and hollow organs. In blood vessels, smooth muscle helps contract the vessel walls to alter their diameter, which helps control blood flow.
In hollow organs, smooth muscles perform rhythmic contractions called peristaltic contractions, which moves the contents of these organs in one direction, like food in the stomach or small intestine.
Smooth muscle is also under involuntary control. Alright, now muscles come in a variety of shapes that help serve their specific functions.
For example, a flat muscle has parallel fibers, and often has a flat sheet-like tendon called an aponeurosis - as is the case for the external oblique muscle covering the abdomen.
Next is a quadrate muscle, which describes a square muscle with four equal sides. An example of a quadrate muscle is the famous six pack, anatomically called the rectus abdominis, which is a long paired muscle that is divided into square-like portions by bands of connective tissue.