Yes! All across east Tennessee, spring sports are making their way back into our lives. And while this is exciting news for many families and student-athletes alike, your child will need a sports physical first before beginning his or her specific sport.

Our team at AFC Urgent Care TN explains why sports physicals are important below, so read on!

What Are Sports Physicals?

Sports physicals are also called Pre-Participation Exams (PPEs) and are necessary because they help determine whether or not it’s safe for your child to participate in a certain sport.

Most states, like Tennessee, actually require that kids and teens have a sports physical before they can start a new sport or begin a new competitive season. We’ve listed the common aspects of a sports physical below.

Aspects of Sports Physical

  • Serious illnesses among family members
  • Illnesses that your child may have now, such as asthma, diabetes or epilepsy
  • Allergies
  • Past injuries, including concussions, sprains or bone fractures
  • Whether your child ever passed out, felt dizzy, had chest pain or had trouble breathing during exercise
  • Any medications your child is on, including over-the-counter medications, herbal supplements and prescription medications
  • Height and weight
  • Strength of your child’s heart, lungs, abdomen, ears, nose and throat
  • Your child’s posture, joints, strength and flexibility

Will My Child Be Able to Play Sports?

Most likely, yes, but it depends on what your doctor or healthcare provider recommends after the sports physical is over.

If there are health complications, most of them won’t prevent your athlete from participating in sports entirely, but sometimes your child will need treatment and/or a follow-up exam to play. We’ve listed the common factors that will influence your health care provider’s decision below.

Factors that Influence Healthcare Provider’s Decision

  • Type of sport and how strenuous it is
  • Position played
  • Level of competition
  • Size of the athlete
  • Use and type of protective equipment
  • Ability to modify the sport to make it safer

Remember, make sure to get your child’s sports physical even before hitting the practice field! We offer them at all of our AFC Urgent Care TN centers, so don’t hesitate to stop by today.