Sports Physical Therapy

Sports Medicine and Adolescent Medicine
Joel Brenner, MD
Aisha Joyce, MD
David Smith, MD
Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine
J. Marc Cardelia, MD
Allison Crepeau, MD
Cara Novick, MD
H. Sheldon St. Clair, MD
Carl St. Remy, MD
Allison Tenfelde, MD

Meet A Patient

Steve Whitmore Getting back in the Game

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Rehabilitation is a very important part of recovering from a sports injury. That’s why CHKD's physical therapists and certified athletic trainers are integral members of our sports medicine team.

What is a physical therapist?

Physical therapists (PTs) are health care professionals who diagnose and treat people who have conditions that limit their ability to move and perform functional activities in their daily lives. PTs also help prevent problems related to the loss of mobility by providing fitness and wellness programs that encourage clients to achieve healthy and active lifestyles

What is a Certified Athletic Trainer?

Certified Athletic Trainers (ATCs) are trained to prevent injury and illness as well as assess, treat, and rehabilitate injuries for physically active people. They are frequently seen in sports-related areas such as schools and are increasingly popular in physical therapy clinics where they assist physical therapists with exercise programs, reconditioning and other activities and can provide important insight to sport-specific activities and sports-related questions. ATCs also educate and instruct patients in techniques to reduce the risk of re-injury once the patient is allowed to return to sports with either limited or full participation.

What services do you offer?

  • We help young athletes rebuild strength, mobility, agility and stamina after an injury so they can return to participation safely --- and often more quickly than they would otherwise.
  • Our goal is not only to help rehabilitate your child after an injury but also to teach techniques that can help prevent injuries from happening again. We work closely with the physicians at CHKD to ensure that rehab progresses as quickly as safety will allow
  • Our department is unique in its focus. Most therapists associated with sports medicine specialists focus on adults, while CHKD’s focus is solely on young people, especially teens and pre-teens. Most pediatric physical therapy focuses on children with significant functional impairment, while CHKD’s sports medicine therapists are specifically trained to provide return-to-sport therapy for otherwise health children.
  • At CHKD’s sports physical therapy clinic, rehabilitation is a positive experience for your child. Young people like being treated in a clinic where the other patients are also their age. They can relate to each other’s struggles and encourage each other to do their best.
  • The physicians, therapists and trainers of CHKD’s Sports Medicine Program also offer practice and game coverage to schools, camps, tournaments and athletic clubs.

Where do you see patients?

CHKD offers sports medicine rehabilitation and certified athletic training at the following locations:

  • The CHKD Health Center at Oakbrooke in Chesapeake
  • The CHKD Health Center at Kempsville in Norfolk
  • The CHKD Health and Surgery Center at Oyster Point in Newport News
  • The CHKD Health and Surgery Center at Princess Anne in Virginia Beach

Each gym features cardiovascular equipment such as pediatric-specific treadmills, bikes and elliptical trainers, plus weight-training machines built specifically to accommodate children from 4'10" to their full adult stature. The CHKD Health and Surgery Center at Oyster Point and the CHKD Health Center at Oabkrooke also have a state-of-the-art aquatic therapy pool.

Do I need a referral to make an appointment?

Yes. All patients must have a referral from a physician.

  • Get a referral from your child's primary care physician before you call to make an appointment.
  • Make sure your referral has not expired. Many are good for only 30 days, so check yours before you come to your appointment. If your referral has expired, call your primary care physician and explain your situation. In most cases, your primary care physician will provide a new or extended referral.
  • Bring the referral with you to the appointment. If you do not have a referral, or if the referral you have is expired, your insurance may not pay for your appointment.

We offer in-depth information about insurance in our Billing and Insurance section.

How do I make an appointment?

To schedule an appointment, please call (757) 668-PLAY (7529).

What to expect during physical therapy

  • Please arrive 10 min. early to complete registration
  • Dress comfortably with appropriate clothing for examination of the injured area. Wear sneakers and exercise clothing.
  • Each physical therapy visit will take approximately 45 to 60 minutes.
  • Parents with children under the age of 14 must remain in the gym or waiting area during the entire session. Parents with children over the age of 14 must attend the initial visit where they may sign a waiver allowing their child to be treated in the absence of a parent.
  • During the first visit, the physical therapist will perform a physical therapy evaluation which begins with the therapist asking several specific questions about the condition and the symptoms. The parent’s input is often very helpful during this time. Afterwards, the PT will perform a thorough examination, often including areas other than the site of the injury in an effort to determine other factors that may have contributed to the condition. Physical therapy treatment often includes a prescription of exercises and may include the use of other modalities, such as heat, ice or massage.
  • During the following visits, the therapist will review the exercises and add additional exercises and modalities as necessary to advance your child’s recovery.
  • To maximize physical therapy’s benefit, it is important that your child perform the exercises as prescribed at home. Please monitor your child’s compliance with this and set aside specific times every day for your child to complete the exercises.