The Benefits of Aquatic Therapy
December 10, 2018
Did you know that Abernethy Laurels has a heated indoor pool? Yes! And, they hold AquaFit classes each week. Aquatic therapy, or pool therapy, consists of an exercise program that is performed in the water. It is a beneficial form of therapy that is useful for a variety of medical conditions. Aquatic therapy uses the physical properties of water to assist in patient healing and exercise performance.
One benefit of aquatic therapy is the buoyancy provided by the water. While submerged in water, buoyancy assists in supporting the weight of the patient. This decreases the amount of weight bearing which reduces the force of stress placed on the joints. This aspect of aquatic therapy is especially useful for patients with arthritis, healing fractured bones, or who are overweight. By decreasing the amount of joint stress it is easier and less painful to perform exercises.
The viscosity of water provides an excellent source of resistance that can be easily incorporated into an aquatic therapy exercise program. This resistance allows for muscle strengthening without the need of weights. Using resistance coupled with the water’s buoyancy allows a person to strengthen muscle groups with decreased joint stress that can not be experienced on land.
The warmth of the water experience during aquatic therapy assists in relaxing muscles and vasodilates vessels, increasing blood flow to injured areas. Patients with muscle spasms, back pain, and fibromyalgia find this aspect of aquatic therapy especially therapeutic.