What is Aquatic Therapy?
Aquatic therapy is a subspecialty of physical and occupational therapy that uses water for rehabilitation. A patient can regain motion at a quicker pace and with less pain if aquatics are incorporated into the rehabilitation program. Water is an excellent exercise medium for a wide variety of patients. Its natural buoyancy allows freedom of movement without jarring or straining the body. Its natural resistance encourages strengthening of the muscles, and its unique properties alleviate pain and facilitate ambulation skills. The physical properties of water make it a highly desirable medium for treating pain and musculo-skeletal injuries.
Who can benefit from aquatic therapy?
Aquatic therapy offers an effective therapy choice for patients with rehabilitation needs or developmental disorders. Aquatic therapy aids in pain reduction, muscle strength, joint flexibility, cardiovascular fitness and ambulation skills. Programs are beneficial for those who have:
Aquatic therapy vs. land exercises
Buoyancy of water decreases weight-bearing on the body, makes stretching easier, movements less painful, allows earlier intervention to prevent surgery, after surgery, or injury, works on balance and postural muscles and allows for active participation. Hydrostatic pressure decreases swelling. The amount of work done by the patient can be increased or decreased by utilizing the properties of the water. Thirty minutes of water aerobics is equal to one hour of land aerobic exercise.
What are some of the most important properties of aquatic therapy?
Buoyancy takes the weight off of our joints, so people with flexibility problems can move in ways they usually canít on land. Those with limited movement due to arthritis or obesity can get a cardiovascular workout without the risk of jarring joints or falling. Buoyancy can be increased with the use of floats.
Viscosity resists movement by means of friction, allowing strengthening and conditioning of an injury, while reducing the risk of further injury due to the loss of balance.
The hydrostatic pressure of water reduces swelling and inflammation in joints, making workouts easier and less painful.
Together, these properties allow development of a therapeutic exercise regimen that controls such critical factors as the weight placed on the spine and risk of injury due to unintended movements.
How to get started
A physician's referral and prior insurance authorization is required to participate.
Aquamed Dry Hydrotherapy
ATM (Acute Therapeutic Movement)
Integrative Dry Needling