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      What's the importance of sports physicals?

      Charlie Zuidema is going into ninth grade. He plays football, hockey, soccer, and track, and he recently got his sports physical.

      Whether you play a contact or non-contact sport, any student playing through their school must have a sports physical. It usually only takes 15 to 20 minutes. It's mostly for organized sports, and the athletes who get theirs are in grades five through twelve.

      So what issues can doctors spot?

      â??The big one we don't want to miss is sudden cardiac arrest,â?? explains Dr. Tony Kamerschen of OSF Family Medicine. â??Sudden cardiac arrest is something that you might listen for with heart rate, and making sure they don't have any murmurs or anything like that."

      Asthma is another issue doctors check on. They make sure kids have the medication should they become short of breath during exercise.

      For girls, doctors will make sure their hips, knees, and ankles are okay. And for boys, doctors will check for any types of hernias.

      Zuidema says the physicals are now routine, and he's always gotten the go-signal to play.

      "I like being with my friends, being on a team, and getting the good exercise," said Zuidema.

      Another thing doctors recommend is a well-child exam. Part of it includes making sure the kids are making healthy choices and avoiding any type of risky behaviors.