The external oblique muscle does the following:
- Laterally flexes the spine.This means that the external oblique muscle bends the spine to the side (i.e. it moves the ribcage downward to the side towards the pelvis).
- Rotates the spine.This means that the external oblique muscle turns the spine to the side (i.e. it twists the torso).
- Compresses the abdominal cavity.This means that the external oblique muscle constricts the organs of the abdominal cavity and can increase intra-abdominal pressure (i.e. such as during a valsalva maneuver).
The muscular anatomy image shown here is in the public domain. It may have been modified by ShapeSense.com, but was originally acquired at the following address:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Gray392.png