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Here in Austin TX, all of our local school districts allow chiropractors to perform back to school athletic physicals. This provides a great opportunity for parents and children to take a yearly requirement and turn it into a learning opportunity. During an athletic physical, we will assess overall risk for the sports participant, but we will also consider his or her needs in order to remain physically healthy. Patients needing college clearance, including UT Austin athletic physicals, will need to check with their university about who is eligible to provide these exams.
An athletic physical, or sports physical, is an exam that is mandated by a school district or other sports provider before a person can play. The idea is to check for conditions that could lead to dangers when the body is put under the kind of physical stress that sports create. These stresses could be related to musculoskeletal injuries or weakness, or they might be related to other conditions such as heart murmurs or exercise-induced asthma.
The doctor who performs an athletic physical first takes a medical history, and then performs a physical exam. The medical history is an important part of the assessment, because previous injuries or illnesses might require follow-up before it can be determined whether it is safe for the person to play sports. Knowing that these conditions used to be present allows the doctor to carefully screen the patient to see if they are still a concern.
During the hands-on portion of the exam, the doctor will look for unhealed injuries, weaknesses, and other indicators of conditions that might make it dangerous for a participant to play sports. Various techniques are used to screen for a number of conditions, such as the famous "duck walk" test that looks for meniscus tears in the knee. Each participant brings their own level of risk for a given condition, and the doctor will decide which tests are warranted based on the patient's background and physical exam findings.
In most cases, athletic physicals do not find anything that prevents patients from playing sports. However, it is much more common for an exam to turn up something that can be treated and would make sports participation for the patient safer. Patients who are out of shape, for example, are better off if they receive some basic counseling on how to get back into shape safely before participating in sports.
Back to school sports physicals are a way of life for lots of people. If you will be needing clearance to play in college, please ask about who is authorized to give UT Austin athletic physicals. Each college has their own rules about who may perform athletic physicals. For K-12 athletes, North Lamar Chiropractic in Austin TX provides thorough athletic physicals that are accepted by all school districts in the area. Call us today to make an appointment at 512-835-1955.
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