The trapezius muscles connect the head and arms to Base-Line support.
The whole of both trapezius muscles should be free move without tension or restriction, guiding the head and arms through a full range of natural movement.
The trapezii (plural) are responsible for aligning the upper body.
Anatomy, keeping it simple...
The left and right trapezius muscles form the superficial muscle layer from mid-back to the back of the head.
Big, thin muscles that curve down the neck and extend out towards each shoulder.
The trapezius muscles attach (via connective tissue) to the skull, shoulder blades, collar bones and vertebrae (bones of the spine) from the top of the spine to level with the lowest ribs.
Feel for the midline bump on the back of your head and then move your fingers towards your ears and feel the ridge where the trapezius muscles attach.
The midline bump is known as the external occipital protuberance one of the 5 midline markers for alignment.
The left and right trapezius muscles meet midline, attaching to the spine via the nuchal ligament in the back of the neck and the supraspinous ligament from the base of the neck down the back.
Feel for all the bony bits where the trapezius attaches near the shoulder.
The direction of the muscle fibres creates 3 sections in each trapezius: the lower, middle and upper trapezius.
Between the shoulder blades there is a diamond/ellipse shaped section of connective tissue extending from the muscle tissue.
Movement of the upper body should begin from the lower trapezius, extending upwards and out towards to the arms and head.
Think extension and expansion, like wings spreading wide.
The fibres of the middle trapezius should be free to extend from midline to the shoulders, overlying the shoulder blades.
The trapezius muscles - a blanket of muscle over the back and neck, extending out to each shoulder, that should be smooth and wrinkle-free.
Look at the pictures, feel for the bony attachments and appreciate the shape and extent of your trapezius muscles.
The potential for movement in the upper body is great but this area can also carry a lot of physical restrictions, resulting in reduced range of movement, imbalance, tensions and pain.
The upper body needs to be supported by the Base-Line muscles to achieve a full range of movement. Pelvic floor Base, rectus abdominis Line.
The upper body is aligned when the midline anatomy the trapezius muscles attach to can align with the linea alba on the median plane.