The Importance of Sports Physicals

Most schools, colleges and athletic leagues require physicals by a healthcare professional before a student athlete can participate in sports. And for good reason. A comprehensive physical ensures that the athlete does not have any preexisting conditions that would put them at risk for serious injury or a life-threatening situation.

 

What, Exactly, Is a Sports Physical?

A sports physical determines if an athlete is healthy enough to play a particular sport. It is different than a regular exam which looks at the overall wellness and development of a child. During the sports physical the healthcare professional will be looking to identify any past injuries or underlying conditions -such as heart conditions, anemia, or high blood pressure- that could endanger the athlete. It’s important to note that identifying these conditions does not necessarily ban the student from participation. Instead, it gives the students, parents, and coaches the opportunity to take precautions to mitigate risk and prevent injury. A sports physical also provides an important opportunity to ensure that past injuries have been fully healed prior to beginning a new season.

 

What to Expect in a Sports Physical?

During the exam, the healthcare professional will have a discussion with the athlete about their current health and their medical history including past injuries, surgeries, and serious illnesses. A head-to-toe physical examination will also be performed which includes checking vitals (height, weight, blood pressure and vision) and looking at reflexes, joint movement, and muscle strength.

 

When to Get a Sports Physical

The ideal timeframe is 6 to 8 weeks before the sports season begins. This will allow time for additional testing or treatment, if needed, and a follow-up exam.

 

Sports Physical Services at MedOne Urgent Care

Our team at MedOne Urgent Care St. Augustine understands how hectic life is for busy families. We conveniently offer sports physicals by licensed healthcare professionals without the need to schedule an appointment.  We are open 9 AM – 6 PM weekdays and 9 AM – 5 PM on weekends. No appointment is necessary.

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