Rectus Abdominus

Diagram of posterior muscles.

The rectus abdominus is a superficial muscle located at the front (anterior) of the body. When toned it can look like a group of muscles, as explained below. It is also known as the abdominals or sometimes merely abs (as in gym-slang).

The rectus abdominus muscle, or 'abs', is especially associated with athletic conditioning. When easily identifiable on toned physiques it is often casually referred to as a 'six-pack'. The muscle definition associated with this muscle, when toned, is due to tendinous bands dividing the rectus abdominous muscle into three or four vertical sections, i.e. giving the appearance of 'rows' of 'stomach muscles', and the linea alba (a region of fibrous connective tissue that lies down the midline of the abdomen) dividing those sections so that they appear to form two columns of 'rippling' muscles.

Origin, Insertion and Actions of the Rectus Abdominus muscles:

Point of Origin:
  • Crest of the pubic bone
Points of Insertion:
  • Cartilage of the 5th to the 7th ribs
  • Xiphoid process, which is also known as the 'xiphoid cartilage', at the lowest part of the sternum ('breastbone').
  • Flexes (bends) the trunk or 'torso' of the body, specifically flexion of the lumbar spine.
  • Depresses the ribcage
  • Helps to stabilize the pelvis during some types of motion (physical activities) e.g. walking.

The rectus abdominus muscle is labelled on the diagram of human anterior muscles.

More about Muscles:

The following are some popular pages in the section about the human muscular system:

There are also more pages about the words used to describe muscles (terminology), the anatomy and physiology of muscles, muscular disorders and associated topics. See also books about sports medicine.

In the News:

Saffron adopted through ABC's Adopt-an-Herb Program - 7 Apr '20

Kale is in season in February - 7 Feb '20

Aromatherapy assoc. NAHA supports lavender via ABC's adopt-an-herb - 22 Dec '19

Garlic and Artichoke adopted through ABC's Adopt-an-Herb Program - 14 Jun '19

Cranberry Harvest underway in USA - 5 Oct '18

Total retail sales of herbal supplements in the USA exceeded $8 Billion in 2017 - 13 Sep '18

It's a bumper blueberry season - 13 Jul '18

Positive effects of exercise on blood cell populations - 20 Jun '18

Take your favourite Angel book, card deck, or crystal with you on holiday. Small items full of love fit in most bags or cases.

Although care has been taken when compiling this page, the information contained might not be completely up to date. Accuracy cannot be guaranteed. This material is copyright. See terms of use.

IvyRose Holistic 2003-2021.