What to Expect
During a sports physical, the provider will complete a:
- Medical history
- Family history
- Height and weight
- Vision exam
- Musculoskeletal exam, including flexibility and strength
- Heart Health including pulse rate and blood pressure
Why does my child need a sports physical?
A sports physical is required before a student participates in any practice or game. This includes both in-season and out-of-season activities. Sports physicals provide valuable insight into your child’s health and well-being and may catch preventable issues.
During a sports physical, the provider is trying to identify anything that might be the athlete at risk for injury or any health challenge that may prevent the athlete from playing. Because children are growing rapidly and continuously, getting a physical once a year is important. It allows the provider to keep a record of any changes as well as assess any injuries that occurred during the previous year.
The Difference Between a Sports and a Regular Physical
An annual physical is different from sports physical because it not only focuses on the physical health of your child but the developmental, emotional and social aspects of your child’s health as well. A full assessment of your child’s cognitive and social milestones will be looked at to ensure proper development in those areas.
How can I prepare for my child’s sports physical?
Your child should wear comfortable clothes to their sports physical, so they can move around as needed. You and/or your child should also be ready to answer questions about their family history and personal health history.
Be prepared to talk specifically about any previous injuries or conditions, including dates of injuries, what treatments your child had and which provider cared for your child. You should also provide a detailed family medical history to give your child’s provider a more complete picture of their health.
You should also encourage your child to be honest when giving their answers to questions during the exam. If athletes are afraid they may not be cleared to play, they might be untruthful about their health and put themselves at risk of injury.