The trapezius muscle, the trapezius muscle, is also called the hood muscle because of its position and anatomical shape. It consists of three parts.

What is the trapezius muscle?

The trapezius muscle (trapezius muscle) is located in the area of ​​the neck and the upper back. It is divided into three different sections, each with a different function. Paralysis of the trapezius muscle leads to shoulder obliquity and pain. Also different movements are no longer possible with a paralysis of the trapezius muscle.

Anatomy & Construction

The trapezius muscle consists of three parts in humans. The descending part (Pars descendens) is located above the scapula. This part of the trapezius muscle originates from the occipital bone (occipital bone) and the neckband.

The neck band is a paired band that runs from the occipital to the spinous process of the seventh cervical vertebra. The upper cervical vertebrae also serve as the point of origin for the descending part of the trapezius muscle. The approach of this muscle part lies in the lateral third of the clavicle. The pars transversa, the transverse part of the trapezius muscle, is located between the thoracic vertebrae and is referred to as the middle hood muscle. Origin are the seventh cervical vertebra and the first three vertebrae of the thoracic spine. Muscle attachment is the acromion. The Acromion is also known as herringbone. It forms the highest point of the scapula in humans.

The third part of the trapezius muscle is the pars ascendens. This ascending part lies below the scapula. Origin of the lower hood muscle are the thoracic vertebrae four to twelve. The starting point, however, is the spina scapulae. The scapular spine is the scapegrain that extends across the dorsal surface of the scapula and divides the scapula into the infraspinate fossa and the supraspinate fossa. Occasionally, the trapezius muscle is also fused with the sternocleidomastoid muscle.

This muscle is also known as a head licker or head licker. It is located between sternum, collarbone and skull base. Both muscles develop from a common system and are also supplied by the same nerve (accessory nerve). Only by the separation of the joint system of the muscles the typical lateral neck triangle (Regio cervicalis lateralis) arises.

Function & Tasks

The individual sections of the trapezius muscle have almost opposite directions of action, so that the muscle can fulfill different functions. The Pars descendens, the descending part, is responsible for the rotation of the head. The lifting of the shoulders also belongs to the scope of this muscle section. The Pars descendens is mainly trained in strength training and bodybuilding. A well-trained descending part of the trapezius muscle keeps the shoulders stable even when carrying heavy loads and does not sink.

A contraction of the middle hood muscle (pars transversa) results in a contraction of the shoulders due to the contraction of the scapulae. The Pars ascendens, the ascending part of the trapezius muscle, lowers the shoulders. An increase in the trunk with fixed arms is possible thanks to the ascending trapezius muscle.


Pain in the neck and upper back is often due to tension in the trapezius muscle. The most frequent cause of these tensions is long sitting in unergonomic postures. Trapezius muscle is particularly common in people who work a lot on the computer or often sit at their desks.

An unfavorable sleeping position, poor posture and heavy stress during sports can lead to tension in the area of ​​the trapezius muscle. Not infrequently, the tension and muscle hardening are also based on mental stress and psychosomatic causes. Another risk factor for tension of the trapezius muscle are shoulder bags. If you carry one-sided pockets on your shoulder, you often pull up on the affected shoulder so that the strap of the bag does not slip off your shoulder. As a result, one half of the descending descendants work permanently, so it can quickly lead to tension.

Impairment of the trapezius muscle is manifested by pain in the neck area, pain in the upper back and in the shoulder, or often headache. Muscles get tired quickly, so lifting arms or shoulders is only possible for a short period of time. Sooner or later, the constant tension also leads to signs of wear on the cervical and thoracic spine. In particular, the vertebrae, the intervertebral joints and the intervertebral discs are affected. One possible consequence is the acute or chronic neck arm or shoulder-arm syndrome. In the vernacular, these phenomena are also known as lumbago.

If the impairment of the trapezius muscle is manifested as a neck-and-head syndrome, symptoms such as dizziness, eye flutter and ringing in the ears are also possible. Less common is the so-called cervical syndrome. Due to the degenerative changes due to the tension of the trapezius muscle, there is a protrusion of the intervertebral disc in the region of the cervical spine. This narrows the spinal canal and squeezes the cervical cord. An acute bruising can lead to paralysis of the arms and legs. It is rather rare. More often, the damages develop more slowly. Typical are gait disturbances, tingling and disorders of fine motor movements.

If the trapezius muscle is paralyzed by a disease, this paralysis manifests itself as a depression of the diseased shoulder. The middle edge of the scapula is crooked and shows from the top outside to the inside down. If the arm is to be raised laterally, this is only possible for a small section. A lifting to the horizontal is not possible. Also, the support of the scapula on the spine is severely impaired.

  • counselor 
  • drug 
  • parasite 
  • body processes 
  • doctor 
  • Top