Teres Major Muscle Anatomy
& Exercises 101: The "Little Lat"
The teres major is a small back muscle located on the outside of the lat. It plays a role in various arm and shoulder movements.
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Due to its proximity to the latissimus dorsi, it has been nicknamed the "Little Lat"...
...Although I like to call mine "Lat Junior."
As with the lats, its major role is moving your arms downwards from a raised position (think of pull ups).
There is a glossary of anatomical definitions at the end of the page, in case you have trouble with some of the terms throughout this guide.
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Teres Major Anatomy
- Posterior Aspect and Lateral Side of the Inferior Angle of the Scapula
- Medial Lip of the Intertubercular Groove of the Anterior Aspect and Medial Side of the Proximal Humerus
- Internal Shoulder Rotation
- Shoulder Extension
- Shoulder Adduction
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Teres Major Muscle Exercises
Exercises. Below is a list of the exercises that most directly workout the teres major muscle.
- Barbell Pullovers
- Bent Over Row
- Cable Internal Shoulder Rotations (Seated or Standing)
- Dumbbell Internal Shoulder Rotations (Lying)
- Lat Pull Downs
- Machine Internal Shoulder Rotations
- Pull Ups and Chin Ups
Related Muscles. Back muscles that perform similar functions include:
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- Internal Shoulder Rotation. Turning the upper arm toward the inside.
- Shoulder Extension. Pulling the upper arm downward from an elevated position.
- Shoulder Adduction. Pulling the upper arms downward and to the side of the body, from an elevated position; exemplified by the pull-ups or pull-downs exercises.
- Humerus. Upper arm bone.
- Intertubercular Groove. The groove between the tubercles (bony protrusions) at the head of the humerus.
- Proximal. Located closest to the origin.
- Rotator Cuff. A complex shoulder structure comprised of muscles and tendons, which enables omnidirectional rotary movement (movement in all directions) via the ball-and-socket shoulder joint.
- Scapula. Shoulder blade.
- Spinous Process. The portion of each individual vertebra that extends downward and backward, away from the arch. Many back muscles attach at these points.
- Superior. Above, or higher; located closer to the head, away from the feet.
- Supraspinous Fossa. The small concave surface in the upper-right corner of the scapula (from the posterior, or rear-view), just above the spine of the scapula.
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