Rectus Capitis Anterior

Joe Muscolino

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The rectus capitis anterior of the prevertebral group of muscles is drawn in bilaterally. The rectus capitis lateralis (also of the prevertebral group) has been ghosted in on the left side.

The Rectus Capitis Anterior is a member of the Prevertebral Group, which is composed of the:

  • Longus colli
  • Longus capitis
  • Rectus capitis anterior
  • Rectus capitis lateralis



  • The rectus capitis anterior attaches from the atlas (C1) to the occiput.
    • The inferior attachment is onto the transverse process of the atlas.



  • Flexes the head at the atlanto-occipital joint.


NOTE: The rectus capitis anterior functions to stabilize the head.