The nuclear receptor ligand-binding domain (LBD) is a highly dynamic entity. Crystal structures have defined multiple low-energy LBD structural conformations of the activation function-2 (AF-2) co-regulator-binding surface, yet it remains unclear how ligand binding influences the number and population of conformations within the AF-2 structural ensemble. Here, we present a nuclear receptor co-regulator-binding surface structural ensemble in solution, viewed through the lens of fluorine-19 (19F) nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and molecular simulations, and the response of this ensemble to ligands, co-regulator peptides and heterodimerization. We correlate the composition of this ensemble with function in peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ (PPARγ) utilizing ligands of diverse efficacy in co-regulator recruitment. While the co-regulator surface of apo PPARγ and partial-agonist-bound PPARγ is characterized by multiple thermodynamically accessible conformations, the full and inverse-agonist-bound PPARγ co-regulator surface is restricted to a few conformations which favor coactivator or corepressor binding, respectively.