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What to expect and how to prepare for your child’s annual sports physical

August 1, 2021

sports physicals at turk express care in granbury and glen rose

The beginning of the new school year is just around the corner and Turk Express Care Clinic, the insurance-free, affordable healthcare clinic in Glen Rose & Granbury, wants to remind parents that now is the time to schedule their children’s sports physicals. The state of Texas requires annual sports physicals (or pre-participation exams) for any student who wants to participate in school sports. The exams can also be a good idea for students participating in some extracurricular activities.

1. How long does a physical take?

Sports physicals take a short amount of time, between 20 and 30 minutes, are low-cost and give you peace of mind that your child can safely compete.

2. Why does my child need a sports physical?

Sports physicals have been performed for almost 40 years and must be completed between May 1st and before your child starts a summer or fall school sport. A sports physical must be completed before a student participates in any practice, before, during or after school, (both in-season and out-of-season) or games/matches. Sports physicals provide a valuable insight into your child’s health and well-being.

During a sports physical, we are trying to identify anything that might put the athlete at an increased risk for an injury or affect their safe participation in sports. Children need a sports physical every year because their growing body is continuously changing. Sports physicals allow physicians, Dr. Turk, to keep a record of those changes as well as assess any injuries that occurred during the previous year.

3. How can I prepare my child for a 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.  It is important that you can talk specifically about any previous injuries or conditions, including dates of injuries, what treatments your child had and which physician cared for your child. You should also provide a detailed family medical history, so you can 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 scared they may not be cleared to play, they might be untruthful about their health and put themselves at risk of injury.

4. What happens during a sports physical?

During your sports physical, Dr. Turk will complete a:

  • Medical history
  • Family history
  • Height and weight assessment
  • Vision exam
  • Musculoskeletal exam
  • Cardiac screening, including pulse rate and blood pressure

5. When is the Best Time to Complete a Sports Physical?

The optimal time to have a physical performed is six weeks before the start of the sports season. If any injuries or conditions are found, six weeks will give the student time to be treated and recover. If physicals are completed seven weeks or more prior to the season, conditions may develop between the time of examination and the start date of the sport.

6. Is a sports physical the same as an annual physical/exam?

Sports physicals don’t take the place of annual physicals because sports physicals are specific only to the sport and mostly focus on injury prevention. The sports physical doesn’t address other health factors in a child’s life. But, a child who has an annual physical won’t need any additional sports physical during a year, unless there’s a change in a child’s medical history that could impact the child’s sport participation.

Sports Physical Exams in Granbury & Glen Rose

Call 817-304-8875 now to schedule your child’s sports physical with Dr. Turk at either of of our Turk Express Care locations:

If you have further questions about sports physicals or your child’s health, contact Turk Express Care Clinic for more information on staying healthy this school year!

Sources:
http://kidshealth.org/en/kids/sports-physicals.html#catstaying-fit 
http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/88972-overview#a4
http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/88972-overview#a2
https://www.childrens.com/
http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/88972-overview#a6
https://www.unitypoint.org/

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