Functions of the Muscular Skeletal System

Contributor: Hannah Brooks. Lesson ID: 12638

Bones: you brush them and break them. Muscles: you strengthen them and sprain them. However, they always work together to keep you safe and standing and strong. Learn what goes on behind the scenes!


Life Science

learning style
personality style
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!


Muscles make us move, and skeletons let us stand. They make a good team! Learn how they work and play together!

The muscular skeletal system is an extremely important body system that allows us to move in our environment.

In the previous Related Lessons of this Muscular-Skeletal System series, found in the right-hand sidebar, you learned about the components of each independent system as well as how the joints llow your body to move. In this lesson, you will focus on how they work together to help support your body!

The muscular skeletal system is made up of all the bones, muscles, joints, tendons, cartilage, and ligaments in your body. We have talked about most of these components in previous lessons. Remember, joints are the locations where two bones meet, and cartilage is a tough connective tissue that provides structure and support.

It's time to talk more about the functions of the combined systems to understand how the skeleton and muscle groups work together.

One of the major functions of the muscular skeletal system is support and protection of organs inside the human body. The rib cage, made up of bones, acts as a protective covering for major organs like the heart, lungs, and kidneys.

Another function of the muscular skeletal system is to support and allow motion. Although the skeleton is made up of strong bones, they are connected with flexible tissues and muscles that move with the bones during locomotion.

You have learned about different types of muscles in a previous lesson, and now you will look at the role skeletal muscle plays in movement. Most skeletal muscles are attached to a bone at one end, and they may stretch across a joint. These are voluntary muscles, which means they move with instruction from the brain. Skeletal muscles can be big or small, and serve important roles in promoting movement and ensuring that you are able to stand straight.

Skeletal muscles are attached to your bones by connective tissues like tendons and ligaments. These tissues are made of small fibers, but are very strong! They are flexible, which aids in movement. Notice how the tendons and ligaments assist the muscles and bones in the elbow — without these tissues, it would be very challenging to catch a ball or do a push-up.

The functions of the muscular skeletal system are very important in your daily life, helping you perform basic movements like eating, walking, and standing. These two systems are interconnected through joints, where muscles and bones meet using connective tissues like tendons and ligaments. Muscles and bones rely on one another for structure and flexibility.

Discuss what you have learned about the function of the muscular skeletal system with a parent or teacher.

  • What questions remain about how these two systems work together?

In the Got It? section, you will watch some informative videos about these two systems.

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