Sports Physicals Specialist

Cardinal Pediatrics

Pediatrics located in Lowell, MA & Chelmsford, MA

Sports physicals can protect children and teens who want to participate in competitive sports. When the experienced team at Cardinal Pediatrics performs a sports physical, they carefully evaluate all aspects of your child's health that could affect their ability to engage in sports. Their physicals meet the school requirements and address parents' concerns. To schedule an appointment, call the office in Lowell or Chelmsford, Massachusetts, or use the online booking feature today.

Sports Physicals Q & A

Why do I need a sports physical?

Any student who wants to participate in athletics must have a current sports physical on record. A sports physical evaluation focuses on whether your child can participate in sports without harming their health. 

If they sustain an injury during their athletic activities, they will also need a sports physical to return to play.

Does a sports physical include my child's medical history? 

Your child's medical history is included in a sports physical. Cardinal Pediatrics needs to know about:

  • Chronic illnesses such as asthma, allergies, or diabetes
  • Previous hospitalizations or surgeries
  • Problems with breathing or dizziness when exercising
  • Family history of heart or lung problems
  • Medications or supplements your child takes
  • History of smoking or drug or alcohol abuse

If your daughter has reached puberty, you should also prepare her to answer questions about menstrual problems and fatigue.

How is a sports physical different from a physical exam?

Your provider evaluates many of the same areas as they would during a physical exam. For example, they check:

  • Vision
  • Hearing
  • Reflexes
  • Heart
  • Blood pressure
  • Posture
  • Height
  • Weight

However, your child's sports physical also focuses on health concerns that aren't usually part of a yearly exam. Cardinal Pediatrics assesses musculoskeletal health, looks for signs of overuse injuries, and evaluates the strength of your child's muscles, joints, and bones.

Your provider checks for signs of previous injuries that could be aggravated during current sports activities, such as fractures, sprains, concussions, and skin infections.

An existing health condition doesn't mean your child can't play sports, but they may need to take steps to stay healthy. For example, children with asthma may need to use an inhaler before their sport to prevent an exercise-induced asthma attack.

Does a sports physical include a heart evaluation?

If your child is in high school, they may need a heart evaluation. However, it doesn’t involve specialized testing. Your provider explores their family history and asks questions about heart symptoms.

Sudden death caused by an undetected heart abnormality is rare in anyone younger than 35, but if it happens, it nearly always occurs during competitive sports. For this reason, many schools require a basic cardiovascular screening as part of the sports physical.

If your child or teen needs a sports physical, call Cardinal Pediatrics, or book an appointment online today.