Muscles

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There are three different types of muscle in the human body and these are; Skeletal, Smooth and Cardiac. Each of these muscle types responds in a different way enabling us to carry out various functions.

The Cardiac muscle; also called the heart is myogenic, which means that it can beat on its own without requiring stimulation from nerve cells. It consists of striated muscle fibres and the myocardium. The cardiac muscle consists of 4 chambers, the left and right atrium and the left and right ventricles which are all connected to allow our blood to flow through and our heart to beat; all done without thought.

Skeletal muscle is striated and voluntary, which means that we can decide when we want to use these muscles, for example, your biceps and quadriceps enable us to walk by contracting them.

Smooth muscle movement is also involuntary, but not striated. These muscles are located in the walls of hollow visceral organs, except the heart, and an example of this is in your intestine which contracts automatically to digest your food.

The striated nature of skeletal and cardiac muscles is due to the dark and light bands that exist on the muscle tissue.

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