Skeletal ligaments are highly organized, fibrous tissues that connect bone to bone.

Some ligaments are large and eas- ily seen or felt; others are small and subtle. All share the task of protecting the joints from instability and allowing normal motion to occur with minimal resistance.

The orientation of a ligament relative to the plane of the joint it crosses determines its mechanical function. For example, the ante- rior talofibular ligament, the structure most commonly injured in an ankle sprain, attach- es the distal fibula to the lateral side of the talus, sloping somewhat anteriorly as it courses toward its distal attachment. Thus, it resists inversion of the ankle joint, especially when the ankle is plantar flexed (the forefoot pointed slightly toward the floor).