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Sports Physicals Specialist

Internal Medicine and Pediatrics of West Michigan -  - Board Certified Internal Medicine Physician

Internal Medicine and Pediatrics of West Michigan

Board Certified Internal Medicine Physicians & Board Certified Pediatricians located in Grand Rapids, MI

Whether you’re playing a sport socially or you’re training as a professional athlete, receiving a sports physical is an important step to starting your sport’s season off right. The skilled providers at Internal Medicine and Pediatrics of West Michigan offer sports physicals year-round to their patients in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Call the office today or request an appointment online.

Sports Physicals Q&A

What is a sports physical?

Sports physicals, sometimes called preparticipation physical examination (PPE), help to determine whether it's safe for you to participate in certain sports. 

Many states require children and teens to have a sports physical before they can begin a new sport or competitive season. However, even if a sports physical isn't required, the team at Internal Medicine and Pediatrics of West Michigan recommends getting one.


What does a sports physical entail?

A sports physical has two primary components. Your physician asks about your medical history and performs a physical exam.


Medical history

Your medical history helps your provider identify any underlying conditions you might have that could affect your ability to participate in athletics. Their questions may include:

  • Illnesses you had when you were younger 
  • Conditions affecting you now like asthma, diabetes, or epilepsy
  • Previous hospitalizations or surgeries
  • Past injuries
  • Whether you've had a history of passing out, feeling dizzy, chest pain, or difficulty breathing during exercise
  • Allergies and medications
  • Known serious illnesses among family members


Learning more about your medical history helps your provider establish a baseline for your health, considering your circumstances.


Physical exam

Your physician checks a variety of things during your physical exam. You can expect them to:

  • Assess your height and weight
  • Check your blood pressure and pulse
  • Examine your heart, lungs, abdomen, ears, nose, and throat
  • Assess your vision
  • Evaluate your posture, joints, strength, and flexibility
  • Discuss your use of drugs, alcohol, and dietary supplements


If everything seems fine at the end of your exam, your provider completes the necessary documentation proving you're fit enough to participate in your sport. In some cases, he may recommend a follow-up exam, additional tests, or specific treatment for a medical condition.


Why are sports physicals important?

A sports physical can help determine if you have an underlying health condition that could affect your ability to participate in a sport safely.

For instance, if you suffer from frequent asthma attacks but really want to try out for a school sports team, your physician can adjust your inhaler to help you breathe more easily when you're running.

Your provider may also recommend stretching or strengthening activities to help you avoid injury.

If you're looking to jump into a sports season, schedule your sports physical today. Call Internal Medicine and Pediatrics of West Michigan or request an appointment online.