Top Benefits of Sports Physicals for Teen Athletes

Mar 12, 2024
Top Benefits of Sports Physicals for Teen Athletes
Sports teams require their athletes to get physicals before they play every year for a reason. Read on to find out the top benefits of sports physicals for teen athletes — and why you shouldn’t miss out!

In the United States, a little more than half of young people ages 6-17 participate in sports every year. 

With so many teenagers participating in the intense physical activity that sports provides, it’s important for them to get a sports physical before they begin competition. While a sports physical is similar to a regular checkup, it specifically targets areas that relate to the athlete’s readiness to participate in sports.

Here at Phillips Family Medical, board-certified family nurse practitioner Pamela Phillips and our team provide these sports physicals often. Here are the top benefits of sports physicals for teen athletes.

Check their current condition

During a sports physical, we’ll check the condition of your teen’s overall health by taking their vital signs and doing a basic physical exam. We’ll also check for balance and stability, and we’ll especially evaluate the body parts they’ll use most in their sport, including:

  • Knees
  • Shoulders
  • Back
  • Neck
  • Ankles
  • Wrists

This will give us a baseline to work from in the event of any future problems. We’ll also make sure your teen is up-to-date on vaccinations.

Look for underlying problems

Not only will we look at your teen’s general health during a sports physical, we’ll also check for any signs of underlying problems, such as:

  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Hernias
  • Heart conditions
  • Muscle or joint problems
  • Neurological conditions

Teen athletes may not even be aware of these potential issues that can show up once they start competing.

Catch future health problems early

For many teenagers, their sports physical may be the only time they see a health care provider, so we’ll also look for anything that may warn us of an approaching condition that could more easily be resolved if it’s caught early enough, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Asthma
  • Obesity
  • Mental health issues

If these conditions aren’t headed off early, they can become much more serious problems to deal with later. 

Give them a chance to ask questions

Teenagers may also have questions they want to ask during a sports physical that they don’t feel comfortable asking others about. A sports physical is a good chance for them to have a conversation about any issues that may be bothering them, especially if they don’t regularly see a doctor.

Provide referrals

If we do find any problems that need to be addressed, we can easily refer your teen to a provider who specializes in that issue.  For instance, if they’ve had knee problems in the past and we notice something we’re concerned about, we can send them directly to an orthopedic specialist.

If you need a sports physical before your season begins, our team at Phillips Family Medical would love to take care of you. Just call our DeSoto, Texas, office at 972-861-1151 or use our online scheduler to book an appointment today.