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Our Bony Body

I am a happy skeleton

Made of bones that keep you up

I live inside your body

Without me you would flop!

Yes, our body is made of a lot of water, tissue, nerves, soft organs and intestines that would all flop into a heap without the framework of bones or skeleton.

We have as many as 206 bones in our body. These bones (our skeleton) make up about one-seventh of an average body’s weight. While our skeleton holds us up, it also helps us move and protects all our internal organs.


We are actually born with 300 bones, but as we grow some of these fuse together.

You might find this difficult to believe but even bones are one-half water. Bones are a lot more flexible and soft when we are young. They become a lot harder as we grow older. Our bones are of different shapes. Some are made to support us, some to help us move, while others are made to protect.

Parts of the skeleton

The axial part of the skeleton is the main central support – it comprises of the skull, the backbone, sacrum (base of the spine), the ribs and coccyx or tailbone. It comprises of 80 bones.

The appendicular skeleton is really attached to our axial skeleton and comprises of our limb bones – shoulders, arms, hands, hips, legs and feet. More than half of the bones in our body are in our hands and feet!

Here is the count:

  • Wrists have 16 bones
  • Hands have 10 bones
  • Fingers have 28 bones
  • Ankles have 14 bones
  • Feet have 10 bones
  • Toes have 28 bones

Did you know

Each bone also has a scientific name that is a little harder to remember? For example our collarbone is called a clavicle and our kneecap is called the patella.

Inside a bone

Bones in a living body are grey in colour. They include blood vessels to bring nourishment, and nerves to feel pain.

Red marrow makes new blood cells while yellow marrow stores energy as fat.

When a bone breaks we call it a fracture. We can see this through special machines that take X-rays.

Bony facts

  • Largest bone: hip bone
  • Smallest bone: stirrup bone (inside each ear)
  • Longest bone: thigh bone (also called femur)
  • Our skull is made of 23 bones

Taking care

While our bones are there to protect important organs and help us move; it is important for us to be careful and protect them too. Bones can break while playing a sport or during an accident. If they break badly, they can even damage our internal organs like the brain. Wearing helmets, kneepads and other protective gear is therefore very important.

Helmets protect our skull from damage. Always wear one when your cycle.

Expert Advice


We don't grow into creativity!

It is not what we know that is important today, but what we do with it! It is our ability to analyze, think out of the box, ideate and create. We need creativity to get on with our lives. Finding that next tagline, strategy or product at work or resolving a tussle at home or even finding a quick fix to a leaking pipe!

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