Foot Bones

People have 26 bones in each foot categorized into three groups – tarsals, metatarsals, and phalanges. These bones provide framework to the foot and enable all foot motions such as bending the toes and ankle, walking, and running.

The foot can be segregated into three parts, the hindfoot, midfoot, and forefoot.

Foot Bones Labeled Diagram

Names of the Bones in the Foot With Basic Anatomy

Tarsal Bones

The tarsals consist of 7 irregular bones forming the hindfoot and the midfoot. These bones are arranged in two rows, proximal and distal. The bones in the proximal row shape the hindfoot, while those in the distal row shape the midfoot.


  1. Talus
  2. Calcaneus

The talus links the foot to the rest of the leg and body through connections with the tibia and fibula, the two long bones in the lower leg.


  1. Navicular
  2. Cuboid
  3. Medial cuneiform
  4. Intermediate cuneiform
  5. Lateral cuneiform

Some individuals may be born with an additional navicular bone (accessory navicular) next to the regular navicular bone, on the inside of the foot. This is a typical anatomical variance observed in around 2.5% of the entire population of the US.

Metatarsal Bones

These are a group of 5 elongated bones located towards the front of the foot, beneath the toes. These form the forefoot, along with the phalanges or toe bones. 

These become shorter as we progress from the big toe (hallux) towards the little toe and are numbered in that sequence.

Each of these bones has a head, body, and base. The base on their proximal side connects with the carpal bones, while the head on the distal side connects with the phalanges. 


Also known as toe bones, these are the 14 elongated bones in the toes on each foot. As mentioned above, these form the forefoot with the metatarsals. 

The second to fifth toes have 3 phalanges each, while only 2 are located in the big toe. These bones are named the proximal (closest to the ankle), middle and distal phalanges (farthest from the ankles) based on their location in the toes. The big toe only has the proximal and distal phalanx.

Being elongated bones, these are also anatomically divided into a head, body, and base.

There are two small ball-shaped sesamoid bones at the base of the big toe, near the joint between the 1st metatarsal and the proximal phalanx of the big toe. These bones act as the attachment point for multiple tendons and aid in the movement of the big toe.

Foot Bones X Ray

Joints Formed by the Foot Bones

In the Hindfoot

  1. Ankle joint: Synovial joint between talus, tibia, and fibula
  2. Subtalar joint: Between the talus and calcaneus

In the Midfoot

  1. Talonavicular: Between the talus and navicular bones
  2. Calcaneocuboid: Between the calcaneus and cuboid
  3. Intercunneiform: Among the three cuneiforms
  4. Tarsometatarsal (TMT): Between the distal tarsal bones and the base on the metatarsals

In the Forefoot

  1. Metatarsophalangeal (MTP): Between the head of the metatarsals and the base of the proximal phalanges.
  2. Interphalangeal joints: Between the phalanges on each toe. The big toe has only 1 interphalangeal joint, while the rest of the toes have 2 each. 

Muscles, Ligaments, and Tendons

Several muscles, ligaments, and tendons are connected to the foot, which aids in all the small and large movements. The most crucial connections are listed below.


  • Peroneal
  • Anterior tibialis 
  • Posterior tibialis 
  • Extensors
  • Flexors

Tendons and Ligaments 

  • Achilles tendon
  • Plantar fascia 
  • Plantar calcaneonavicular ligament
  • Calcaneocuboid ligament


    1. Foot bones: Everything you need to know – 
    2. Anatomy of the Foot and Ankle –
    3. Foot Bones –
    4. Anatomy of the Foot – 
    5. Feet (Human Anatomy): Bones, Tendons, Ligaments, and More –
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