School and Sports Physicals

You have heard your child’s primary healthcare provider emphasize the value of keeping your child active at home and school. Children are naturally active when young; this activity level reduces as they grow older and discover new hobbies. For that reason, your child needs regular checkups and examinations to evaluate their preparation for sports activities in school. Most schools require students to have sports physicals before playing school sports. Even if your child’s school doesn’t require it, Nebraska Home Pediatrics recommends getting one to ensure your child is physically fit to engage in sports activities in school. We typically conduct medical and physical exams and rely on your child’s medical history to determine the necessary tests.

The Nebraska state law requires physical exams, including vision screening, be conducted on all incoming kindergarten students and incoming seventh graders. These exams must be conducted no more than six months before school starts in the fall. That means scheduling your child’s physical appointment early to beat the rush.

What are School and Sports Physicals?

If your child is joining kindergarten soon, starting seventh grade, or considering playing a sport, you will need a current school or sports physical appointment on file. You’re probably wondering what these two terms mean.

School Physicals

School physicals focus on different areas of your child’s health. At NHP, our school physicals include examining your child’s social, emotional, and developmental progress. We will give your child a complete physical and ask questions about your family history while checking their social and cognitive progress. During a school physical, your child’s medical provider  may request lab work and administer an immunization. You can take this opportunity to raise any concerns about your child, including their nutrition, sleeping habits, and adolescent issues.

Sports Physicals

Sports physicals are conducted to determine your child’s fitness level to ensure they won’t be at any risk for them when playing sports. If the medical provider feels your child is at risk, they may refer you to a specialist or provide prescriptions based on their findings. In sports physicals, the medical provider  focuses on vision, weight, height, blood pressure, heart health, bone health, muscle health, strength, and flexibility. The medical provider  will ask about the child’s medical history to know past conditions and other risks. If your child is a sports athlete, bringing that paperwork might be helpful as they may require lab tests that are not usually included in the Nebraska school’s requirements.

How to Prepare Your Child For School and Sports Physicals

Since school and sports physicals are mandatory, knowing how to prepare your child is critical for a smooth evaluation. At NHP, we recommend reviewing your child’s medical history and preparing questions to ask your child’s medical provider. It also pays to know how to respond to what will be asked. It’s very important that you know your health history and other family health issues, especially heart disease or unexplained deaths. These questions help the doctor assess other health conditions that could be potential risks when they’re in school.

Schedule a Physical Today!

Don’t wait until the last minute to book your child’s physical. We also offer other medical care services such as drive-thru testing, quick PCR testing, and in-home visits. Contact Nebraska Home Pediatrics to schedule your child’s appointment today.

Our Pediatric Urgent Care Clinic is now open at 2953 S. 168th St, Suite 101, Omaha, NE 68130.