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Sports Physicals for Student Athletes

Sports Physicals for Student Athletes

Washington Hospital Sports Medicine Program offers $20 physicals at Local High Schools

The Washington Sports Medicine Program will be providing pre-participation sports physicals on Wednesday, August 3, at the library of Irvington High School and Thursday, August 4, at the library of Newark Memorial High School. The time for both locations is from 3 to 6 p.m. High school athletes of any sport are eligible to attend.

Appointments are required. Walk-up appointments will be accepted if slots are available, but the cost will increase to $40.

“These physicals are required by the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF), but more importantly, we want to make sure these young athletes are healthy enough to play their sport,” says Mike Rogers, program manager. “Though we’ve had our sports medicine program for several years, for the past few years, we’ve held the physicals at one of the local high schools, rotating locations each time. Due to health concerns during COVID, we had to suspend the program, but are happy to welcome back these student athletes.” Rogers notes both the quality of the exam and the convenience to the students and their parents. “These exams cover basic screenings, an orthopedic exam and a physical with a sports medicine physician. Feedback we received from community members was that having them at a high school made it easier on students and parents.”

Both the families and the schools benefit. The cost is $20 (cash or check made out to WHHS), and the proceeds are divided among six local high schools to be used for their individual sports medicine programs. Washington Hospital’s sports medicine program is led by Medical Director, Russell Nord, MD, who is board certified in both orthopedic surgery and sports medicine.

As part of Washington’s Sports Medicine Program, Certified Athletic Trainers are stationed at each high school and their presence contributes to maintaining the safety of student athletes. “By having someone on-site, an athlete is more inclined to have injuries evaluated earlier. The athletic trainer can determine whether an injury requires further medical attention. Athletes — especially high school students — have a tendency to wait before seeing a physician. This can lead to injury exacerbation and further damage by the time I see them, which often means longer recovery time,” says Dr. Nord.

In addition to physicians and athletic trainers, the Washington Sports Medicine Program is staffed with physical therapists who are experienced in helping injured athletes return to their favorite activities with as little downtime as possible.

What students can expect at the exam

Students move from station to station. First, the student athlete checks in and hands in completed and signed medical history forms. The athlete is then evaluated with basic screenings: height, weight, blood pressure and vision. Next, an athletic trainer will perform an orthopedic evaluation. Finally, each student will meet privately with a sports medicine physician.

Students should wear comfortable clothing including shorts and short-sleeved shirts. The information forms must be completed in advance, including the signature of a parent or legal guardian. Forms are available online at

For information on the Washington Hospital Sports Medicine Program or to find a physician or physical therapist, visit www.whhs/services.

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