Sports Physicals: Everything You Need to Know Before Getting One

Updated on August 4, 2019

Do you or child need a sports physical? To get you prepared, here is everything you need to know about getting sports physicals.

When your children are ready to play sports, one of the things you need to get taken care of is their sports physicals.

Three out of four American families with children have kids in sports which means you need to take care of your physical as soon as possible. When it gets close to the time for school to start, it may be difficult for you to get an appointment.

If you’re prepared properly, it will make it much easier for you to get your kids through the process. Continue reading this article to learn more about getting a sports physical for your children.

The 411 on Sports Physicals

Whether you take your kids to this clinic or one of the other trusted clinics around the US, you still need to prepare the same way. The following information will help make the process as painless as possible.

Understand Why Your Children Need a Sports Physical

If your child hasn’t had any health issues, you might be wondering why they need a physical to play sports. Shouldn’t their past health information be enough to show that they are in good condition?

Simply put — no.

Sports physicals do more than making sure your children are in good health. Sports physicals check to see how mature their body is, measure their physical fitness and learns about the injuries they already have.

If there are physical conditions your children were born with, the sports physical will check to see how they will affect your children’s ability to play sports.

If the exam does find something, the doctor will help you work around these challenges as best as possible so your children can still play sports.

Preparing for the Physical

There are some simple things you can do to prepare for a sports physical that will make it easier for you to get the green light for your children to play sports.

1 – Completely & Accurately Fill Out Information

The more detail you give the doctor doing the exam, the easier it makes it for you, your children and the doctor. If you forget to fill out important information, the exam may not be as helpful as it would have been otherwise.

You don’t want the doctor to clear your children to play sports because they didn’t check for something important due to lack of information.

When doctors know your children’s health history, they will be able to customize the physical according to your child’s needs.

2 – Understand that Male & Female Exam Differ

If your children have gone through puberty already, the questions the doctor asks them may differ depending on whether they are male or female. Below we will discuss what to expect when your children go in for their physical.

3 – Write a List of Questions

You’ve likely come up with a few questions leading up to the physical. While you might think you’re going to remember them — it’s likely you’re going to forget something important.

Write down any questions and concerns and don’t be afraid to voice them and ask whatever you need to ask.

4 – Bring Important Documents

If your children have any allergies, you should bring a full list to your doctor so they can review it with you.

You should also bring each child’s shot records. If your children take any medications, bring those medications in with them to the appointment. Even if the medication they’re taking isn’t prescription, you need to let the doctor know what they’re working with.

Have your children been hospitalized before? Bring in records that show what the hospitalization was for and when the event took place.

Bring a list of family illnesses and other important information that might give the doctor an idea of why you might be experiencing certain symptoms.

If your children have experienced unexplained weight gain or unexplained weight loss, you should bring a list of dates and how much weight for each occurrence. You may be able to work together to piece together why the weight loss took place so you can keep an eye on your children during their sports play. 

What Happens During the Physical?

If you’re nervous about the physical, your children are going to be nervous about the physical. Do them a favor and get as much information as you need to be comfortable with the process.

While there may be some slight differences from one doctor to the next, the following information will give you a basic understanding of what is going to happen.

As the sports physical begins, you’re likely to notice it is very similar to your annual checkup. The doctor is going to ask your children about their height and weight. The doctor will also check their blood pressure, pulse, vision, heart, lungs, ears, nose, belly, and throat.

They will also check your children’s strength, posture, flexibility, and other standard checkup matters.

The doctor will also ask your children if they use any illegal substances, how their diet is and they will ask female about their menstrual cycle if applicable.

As you can see, there is nothing to be concerned about when you take your children to get their sports physical.

Learn More About Health and Wellness

Now that you know more about sports physicals, why not continue your education? We have more information on health and wellness that can help you throughout your lifetime.

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