A skeletal muscle consists of numerous muscle cells called muscle fibers. Three layers of connective tissues surround these fibers to form a muscle. These and other connective tissues associated with muscles follow: The endomysium is the connective tissue that surrounds each muscle fiber (cell). The perimysium encircles a group of muscle fibers, forming a fascicle. The epimysium encircles all the fascicles to form a complete muscle. A tendon is a cordlike extension of the preceding three linings. It extends beyond the muscle tissue to connect the muscle to a bone or to other muscles. An aponeurosis is a flat broad extension of the three muscle linings and serves the same function as a tendon. Fascia is a term for a layer or sheet of connective tissue. The deep fascia surrounds the epimysium and encloses or lines other nearby structures such as blood vessels, nerves, and the body wall. The superficial fascia (hypodermis or subcutaneous layer) lies immediately below the skin. The superficial fascia merges with the deep fascia where the surfaces of the skin meet.