Types of Muscles

There are three main types of muscular tissue responsible for movement within the human body:

Skeletal Muscle

  • Skeletal muscle is found attached to the skeleton and is responsible for the voluntary movement of bones
  • Skeletal muscle fibres run in parallel tracts and are multinucleated and heavily striated

Smooth Muscle

  • Smooth muscle is found in the lining of internal organs (GI tract, uterus, blood vessels, eyes, etc.)
  • It controls the involuntary constriction of these regions (e.g. peristalsis, vasoconstriction, pupil dilation)
  • Smooth muscle fibres are not striated, have a spindle shape and each fibre contains a single central nucleus

Cardiac Muscle

  • Cardiac muscle is found in the heart and is responsible for the rhythmic contraction of the heart (i.e. heart beat)
  • Cardiac muscle fibres are branching, intercalated, lightly striated  and have a single nucleus per fibre 

Types of Muscle Tissue

muscle tissues