SEER Training Modules

Divisions of the Skeleton

The adult human skeleton usually consists of 206 named bones. These bones can be grouped in two divisions: axial skeleton and appendicular skeleton. The 80 bones of the axial skeleton form the vertical axis of the body. They include the bones of the head, vertebral column, ribs and breastbone or sternum. The appendicular skeleton consists of 126 bones and includes the free appendages and their attachments to the axial skeleton. The free appendages are the upper and lower extremities, or limbs, and their attachments which are called girdles. The named bones of the body are listed below by category.