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Sports Physicals Colorado 101

Did you know that in Colorado, Chiropractors with specialty training are able to perform pre-participation physical evaluations, also known as PPEs. PPEs are evaluations that verify that the athletes are medically cleared to participate in athletics at the youth, high school and college levels. It is recommended by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) that every student-athlete have a PPE before participating in sports. For collegiate level athletes, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) recommends every student-athlete have a PPE before participation, and most institutions require a PPE.  The goals of this exam include determining general physical and psychological health, evaluating for life threatening or disabling conditions and conditions that may predispose to injury or illness. The exam consists of the following:

  • Vital signs: blood pressure, respiration rate, temperature, weight 

  • General inspection, which includes evaluation of skin, overall appearance, and posture

  • Eyes, ears, nose, throat evaluation

  • Cardiovascular and pulmonary screen 

  • Abdominal examination 

  • Neurological examination

  • Musculoskeletal examination- both static and functional testing 

  • Evaluation of active and passive range of motion 

  • Orthopedic testing

  • Muscle and ligament evaluation 

  • General medical evaluation 

Chiropractors are required to attend a certification course, which greatly focuses on the cardiovascular screen, in order to be eligible to perform this evaluation. They also must maintain a current PPE Registry status through recertification every 2 years along with a Health Provider CPR Certification.  

PPEs at Washington Park Chiropractic are so convenient and may be accommodated same-day. Call or text the front desk today to schedule your appointment at 303-744-7100. If you have any questions, we are happy to answer them at

Katherine Mullen, DC, MS is a Chiropractic Physician with a Masters in Sports Medicine. She has a special interest in the treatment of athletes through chiropractic and rehabilitative care. She is also certified to perform pre-participation physical exams (PPEs). Stay connected with Dr. Mullen on Instagram @washparkchiro or @katherinemullen


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