Just Add Water: Aquatic Therapy Eases Patients into Physical Therapy

Physical therapy can be extremely beneficial for people who experience pain in their joints and muscles, or who have recently undergone surgery and need recovery support. However, some people may struggle to improve balance, strength, and independence at the rate they desire with land-based physical therapy. Fortunately, there’s a simple solution for this challenge: Just Add Water.

That’s right. For those who are looking for an easier start to physical therapy, just add water through aquatic therapy. What is aquatic therapy? Aquatic therapy is simply physical therapy performed in water, and provides numerous therapeutic benefits that can help you achieve your rehabilitation goals with less strain and greater opportunities for mobility.

Why Choose Aquatic Therapy

So what makes aquatic therapy such a good option for physical therapy? Water has three properties that make it an excellent choice for therapy:

  1. You will weigh less in the water, making all movements in the water easier to make. This is especially important if you’re having difficulty with weight bearing movement, such as walking or going up and down steps.
  2. The pressure from the water on your body has a soothing effect for painful conditions.
  3. Water is denser than air, so as you try to move faster, you’ll experience resistance. This allows you to progress your exercises without adding machines or gadgets.

Aquatic Therapy Benefits

Here are just a few of the many benefits of aquatic therapy:

  • Water resistance can help you improve strength, balance and mobility without causing injury.
  • Water can help you relax and places less stress on joints.
  • Aquatic therapy can improve your activities of daily living through greater strength and range of motion.
  • You may see quicker results in the water than on land thanks to the water’s buoyancy and resistance.
  • Greater confidence as you accomplish your goals more quickly than traditional physical therapy.
  • What to Expect from Aquatic Therapy

Exercises in the pool range from walking in the water to patterned arm and leg movement using the water as resistance. At Galloway Therapy, we have multiple aquatic exercise tools that can be used to enhance the work in the water, including an in-pool treadmill. Your therapist will determine the type, variety and complexity of the exercises based on your physical level and condition. Often, our patients are able to easily transition from aquatic therapy to land-based physical therapy, where you can continue reaching your therapy and health goals.

Here’s what to expect from aquatic therapy at Galloway Therapy:

  • Our pool has a lift that can help you enter and exit the pool as needed
  • Please bring a towel and whatever toiletries you may need.
  • You may wear a shirt over a bathing suit. For safety, comfort and hygiene, wearing aqua/water shoes in the pool and shower area is advised.
  • Sessions generally last from 15 – 60 minutes of in-the-water time.
  • Most of our pool exercises will keep your head above water. You will only swim if it is appropriate for you and if you are comfortable doing so.
  • We do not put patients with open wounds or infections in the pool. Patients need to be able to control their bowel and bladder.
  • The pool is indoor and the water is heated to a comfortable temperature.

Start Aquatic Therapy Today

For more information about aquatic therapy and how it can benefit you, please contact Galloway Therapy at 501-319-7659, or visit www.GallowayTherapy.com.

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