How many times have I heard or read when using two circulars to knit in the round, keep your working needle infront? The answer is countless!
Settled in to watch tv last night (West Wing, Roar), picked up the Regia sock and began knitting, low and behold, I was seeing the purl side.....hmmm, flipped it inside out which brought the needle I was knitting off of to the front....ta da! no more ladders.
Moral of the story: Keep your working needle in front!