Difference Between Ligaments and Tendons

Difference Between Ligaments and Tendons

The most obvious difference between Ligaments and Tendons is that tendons join bone to a skeletal muscle and ligaments join bone to another bone. Both of these tissues have a special type of cell called Fibroblast that forms the structural framework for connective tissues.


Difference Between Ligaments and Tendons

Tendon and Ligament

Tendons are strong and non-flexible while ligaments are flexible and elastic. Both play a vital role in joints and bones and are composed of living cells. They contain plenty of collagen.

Difference Between Tendon and Ligament

Tendons and Ligaments are an integral part of locomotion in all higher organisms. The important differences between ligaments and tendons are summarized in the table below:



Connects skeletal muscles to bones.

Connects bones to bones.

Tough and elastic.


Connects the end of the muscles to bones.

Connects the end of the bones at joints.

Each muscle contains only one tendon.

Each joint contains many ligaments.

Proteoglycan content is less.

Proteoglycan content is more.

White in colour.

Yellow in colour.

Blood supply is good.

Blood supply is poor.

Fibroblasts lie in a continuous row.

Fibroblasts are scattered.

The fibres and compact and present in parallel bundles. They are not arranged in parallel bundles but are compactly packed.
No such classification. They are classified into 3 types, namely: Articular ligaments, Remnant ligaments and Peritoneal Ligaments


Blood, specialized cells (WBCs and platelets) and its vessels are key components to healing when the body has an injury. Blood vessels transport nutrients and oxygen that helps to accelerate the healing process. Tendons and ligament lack a lot of blood vessels and this is the reason why they take a long time to heal when they are injured.

In conclusion, tendons and ligaments are a crucial part of the skeletal system and are integral for locomotion. And even though these are structurally different, they play a significant function in the movement of vertebrates.

For more information on the difference between tendon and ligament, keep visiting BYJU’S website or download BYJU’S app for further reference.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How is a tendon different from a ligament?

Tendons are cord-like structures that transmit muscular force to a bone. On the contrary, ligaments are the structures that connect a bone to a bone.

What is a ligament?

A ligament is a fibrous connective tissue that connects bones to other bones. They are elastic with a poor blood supply. They appear as criss-cross bands.

What is a tendon?

A tendon is a tough fibrous connective tissue that connects muscle to bone. A tendon can withstand tension. For eg., the Achilles tension.

How is a tendon different from a nerve?

A tendon is a bundle of inelastic fibrous tissues that connects a muscle to a bone whereas a nerve is a bundle of neurons with blood vessels, connective tissue sheaths, and lymphatics.

What is a tendon tear?

A tendon tear is a condition in which a tendon separates in whole or in part from the tissue to which it is attached.

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