Ailments & ConditionsYour Health

Why Do I Have Serratus Anterior Pain?

What Is the Serratus Anterior?

The serratus anterior, also known as the scapula, is a muscle that attaches the shoulder blade to the rib cage. It originates via 8 muscular slips and courses around the rib cage before inserting along the scapula’s medial border. The muscle plays a key role in the proper function of the shoulder. It is quite rare to have injuries in the serratus anterior. But when it occurs, you might need rehab to get the shoulder functioning and moving properly again. [1]

The function of the Serratus Anterior

The serratus anterior works by protracting the shoulder blades. It means that this muscle can pull them forward around the rib cage. You can think of a person who is punching: the arm comes forward when the serratus anterior pulls his shoulder blade around his ribs. The superior and inferior areas of this muscle also help the shoulder blade stay stable against the rib cage. When both contract together, they can pull the scapula tight against your rib’s back. When the shoulder and arm are in a stable and fixed position, the serratus anterior can elevate the ribs. This happens during normal breathing. [2]