It is important to compare and contrast sprains and strains, very common injuries in sports, as people often confuse the two.  Sprains are injuries to a ligament that connects bones at a joint, whereas strains are injuries to a muscle or tendon that attaches muscle to bone.  Sprains and strains have similarities and differences in the way they occur, in their symptoms and prevention methods.  Both result from a simple fall, or a blow to the body, albeit involving different parts.  Both injuries result in pain, swelling or inflammation.  However, in severe cases, sprains cause loss of joint function, while strains cause loss of muscle function.  A healthy diet, daily exercise and appropriate shoes are preventative measures for both injuries.