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Fig. 3.36 The plantar fascia is, in fact, only the most superficial of
several layers of myofascia, including the long plantar ligament and
the spring ligament, that act to support the arches (Compare to
Fig. 3.8)
Fig. 3.38 The location of the cardinal lines on a generalized
vertebrate body plan. Notice that the SBL lies behind the spine,
while the Deep Front Line lies just in front of the spine, and the
Superficial Front Line in front of the organs. From the beginning of
vertebrate evolution, the left-right symmetry of the musculoskeletal
system has not been matched by a front-back symmetry.
In the last part of the SBL, the scalp fascia, there is clearly
only one thick layer of fascia between the periosteum of the
skull and the dermal layer of the skin, and several lines and
levels of myofascia, as we mentioned earlier, blend into this
The answer to our question, therefore, is that there is no
myofascial Deep Back Line, whether symmetry requires it or
not. The argument for symmetry falls away in any case as we
examine our evolutionary history and realize that the Deep
Front Line began as the original back line of our tunicate 'gut
body' self (Fig. 3.38). (See also the general discussion of the
Deep Front Line in Ch. 9.)
An argument can be made for a 'Deep Back Line' that
would consist of the connective tissue that surrounds the
central nervous system, the dura, and its extension into
the neural and neurovascular bundles that snake through the
limbs. This has an attraction in that the Deep Front Line sur-
rounds the ventral organs, and its projections into the arms
(via the Deep Front Arm Line) and legs, can be seen as the
extension of these organs into the arms and legs. Likewise,
the dura surrounds the organs of the dorsal cavity, and thus
its extensions into the limbs could be termed the Deep Back
Line, especially the sciatic nerve. As more work is done with
the connections of dural and nerve sheath anatomy, we may
find this argument has merit, but given that (1) this fascial
configuration would be associated with no muscles except
perhaps the piriformis, and (2) the fascial extensions of the
dura follow the nerves everywhere in the body (front, back and
sides, not just the inner back of the leg), we choose to stay
with the idea that there is simply no coherent myofascial con-
tinuity that could be termed the Deep Back Line.
There are, as we have seen, several places on the SBL
where important locals underlie the multi-joint expresses.
Because the skeleton underlying the SBL undulates with
primary and secondary curves, we can note that these locals
tend to congregate around the secondary, posteriorly convex
curves - under the foot arches, around the knee, and in the
lumbars and cervicals. The exception here is of course the
thoracic area, where just as many locals underlie the expresses
around a primary curve. This provides the opportunity for local
strain, and thus for many tenacious trigger points which, para-
doxically, are often best addressed posturally from the front
(see the section on the interaction between the SBL and the
Superficial Front Line in Ch. 4, p. 111).
Fig. 3.37 The SBL occupies the entire superficial posterior
compartment of the lower leg. The deep posterior compartment
belongs not to a 'Deep Back Line' but, paradoxically, to the Deep
Front Line.
area, limiting hip flexion along with the hamstrings, as well as
helping to keep the spine aloft and in balance. In this light,
this group might better have been named extensor coxae
brevis, the short extensors of the hip. These muscles, from
piriformis down through the obturators and the gemelli to the
quadratus femoris, have a continuity of function with each
other, but no linear fascial continuity with other local myofas-
cial structures. These deep lateral rotators are best thought of
as a branch of the Deep Front Line in the myofascial meridians
theory (see Ch. 9), though their lack of linear longitudinal con-
nections makes them difficult to place in the Anatomy Trains
metaphor. They are best considered in light of another concept,
the fans of the hip joint. 7
In the spinal area, it could be argued that the muscles we
have included as part of the SBL fall into two major fascial
planes, the more superficial erector spinae (spinalis, longissi-
mus, and iliocostalis) and the deeper transversospinalis
(semispinalis, multifidus, rotatores, interspinous, and inter-
transversarii). While it is true that there is a fascial plane
between these two groups, it is argued here quite firmly that
this is simply a massively complicated set of locals and
expresses, with the tiny monarticular locals forming three dis-
tinct patterns over the 26 bones between sacrum and occiput
(see Figs 3.23 and 3.24, pp. 85 and 86). These patterns -
spinous process to spinous process, transverse process to
transverse process, and spinous process to transverse process
- are repeated with ever-greater polyarticular intervals by the
overlying muscles.
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