The BPT Aquatic Therapy Experience
Your Physician, Physical Therapist or Occupational Therapist may recommend aquatic therapy as a treatment option for you at BPT. All of our aquatic treatments conducted in our heated pool are completed privately and one on one with your treating therapist. Aquatic therapy is beneficial for patients recovering from all phases of injury and illness and is a very good initial treatment option for those patients who need a little more time to work up to a traditional therapy program or in addition to a land based program.
Benefits of Aquatic Therapy
1. Increase in joint flexibility and ROM due the buoyancy that water offers. Buoyancy reduces the overall effect of gravity which aides in range of motion and allows for easier and less painful movement..
2. Increase in muscle strength due to the resistive nature of water. Because water is dense as compared to air some (600 times more) it allows for great strengthening. Added to the general buoyancy that water adds, patients sometimes feel it is easier to exercise initially in this environment.
3. Decrease in pain. Our pool is kept at 92-94 degrees and the warm water increases overall comfort for the patient as well as increasing blood flow to sore muscles. With the weight bearing decreases due to the buoyancy of the water it is easier to move and exercise, creating additional comfort.
4. Improved balance. You can improve your balance in the water with less fear of falling. Because of the pressure the water exerts on your body and the buoyancy properties of the water you can have increased reaction time thus enhancing balance training.
5. Decreased joint swelling and increased joint position awareness. The hydrostatic pressure of the water helps reduce joint and soft tissue swelling. The hydrostatic pressure can also improve your ability to feel what’s happening at your joints. For example, when you injur a ligament or sprain an ankle you will reduce your ability to to feel what is happening at that joint. The ability to feel this is called proprioception and this can be improved with exercises in the water.
Aquatic therapy is not for everyone. People with special heart conditions may not be able to complete aquatic therapy nor should individuals with fever, infections or bowel or bladder incontinence.