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The Muscular System. By Alexis DiStasio and Kate Brown. The Equine Muscular System. Large muscular system which allows movement Gives a horse definition Allows posture . 3 Types of Muscles. Smooth Cardiac Skeletal. Smooth Muscle.

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The Muscular System

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the muscular system

The Muscular System

By Alexis DiStasio and Kate Brown


The Equine Muscular System

  • Large muscular system which allows movement
  • Gives a horse definition
  • Allows posture
3 types of muscles
3 Types of Muscles
  • Smooth
  • Cardiac
  • Skeletal
smooth muscle
Smooth Muscle
  • Found in digestive, circulatory, and urogenital systems
  • Sustained, rhythmic contractions
  • Made up of spindle-shaped cells with a single nucleus
  • Least specialized
  • Involuntary movement
cardiac muscle
Cardiac Muscle
  • Found only in the heart
  • Highly specialized
  • Rapid, rhythmical contraction and relaxation
  • Never tires, allowing heart to continually pump blood
  • Involuntary movement
skeletal muscle
Skeletal Muscle
  • Most highly specialized
  • Used for movement and can contract quickly
  • Function: to provide powerful, rapid contractions to allow locomotion
  • Attached to limbs of skeleton
  • Voluntary – controlled by brain and nervous system

Riding Horse

  • Voluntary muscles are significant.
  • Flexor muscles:
    • bend joint
  • Extensor muscles:
    • straighten joints
  • This is a long triangular muscle
  • located at the top of the neck
  • Action - To draw the scapula upwards and forwards
  • A triangular muscle
  • located on the side of the neck
  • Action- Acting alone, the splenius draws the head and neck towards the side
  • Situated on the side of the neck and withers.
  • It is a triangular muscle
  • Action - acting alone the trapezius pulls the shoulder upwards and forwards.
latissimus dorsi
  • Located on along the back down to the chest
  • Acting alone helps move the front legs and chest
superficial gluteus
Superficial Gluteus
  • The most superficial muscle of the croup.
  • It is V-shaped
  • Action – move the thigh outward
biceps femoris
Biceps femoris
  • long, thick, muscle
  • extending from the superior part of the croup to the stifle
  • Action- It flexes the tibia and with assistance helps in the act of rearing
external intercostal
External Intercostal
  • Aseries of thin, flat muscles between the ribs
  • Action - Move the ribs upward and forward and assist in inspiration.
posterior deep pectoral
Posterior Deep Pectoral
  • Broad flat muscle
  • Extends from under the abdomen
  • Action – to pull the scapula in a backward direction
  • Long, thick muscle
  • located in the neck
  • Action - help move the neck
  • Thick square muscle
  • Located on the lower jaw
  • Action – brings the teeth of the lower jaw and the teeth of the upper jaw together
slow twitch muscle fibres
Slow-Twitch Muscle Fibres
  • Slow contractions and relaxation times
    • Used for maintaining posture when exercising at slow speeds
  • Gain energy to function through aerobic (oxygen) metabolism only
  • Activities such as driving, dressage, and endurance riding
fast twitch muscle fibres
Fast-Twitch Muscle Fibres
  • Two Kinds:
    • Fast-twitch, high-oxidative fibers
    • Fast-twitch, low-oxidative fibers
fast twitch high oxidative fibres
Fast-Twitch, High-Oxidative Fibres
  • Good oxygen capacity
  • Use oxygen to supply energy while working at high speeds
  • Gain energy through aerobic and anaerobic metabolism
  • Used during eventing, jumping, polo, and racing
fast twitch low oxidative fibres
Fast-twitch, Low-Oxidative Fibres
  • Does not have good oxygen capacity
  • Burn oxygen quickly
  • Used for short bursts of fast work
  • Anaerobic metabolism only
work cited
Work Cited
  • Anatomy and Physiology of Farm Animals. Pages 164-65
  • The Equine Body. By Beth Maloney (Chpt. 6)