Aquatic Therapy Is The Best!
 by: Chris Knudsen, DPT

The Rehab Center - Physical Therapy 

What's so great about aquatic therapy? It is simply the easiest way to exercise for people who are in pain. Maybe you have avoided exercise because you were nervous or afraid of the pain you might get. With aquatic therapy there is less to worry about. It is not like land therapy. Maybe you tried to exercise but you got tired too quickly and had to stop. Has it been hard for you to exercise long enough to get any results? Aquatic therapy is different. Did you stop exercising because every time you did you noticed increased swelling in your feet or legs? Here are six great things about aquatic therapy that might help convince you to try it.

1. The relaxing effect of warm water.

The Rehab Center provides aquatic therapy at our clinics in Ephrata and New Holland, PA. The water in each of these pools is kept at the optimal therapeutic temperature of 92 degrees. This has the effect of softening stiff muscles and joints, improving blood flow, and improving range of motion.

2. Decreased effects of gravity. 

Being in water reduces the stressful effects of gravity on painful joints. With the water at chest-level body weight is reduced by up to 80%. This can increase the ability to exercise longer and get a more pain-free workout. It also takes stress off of your joints, decreasing the normal wear and tear you might normally experience from land-based exercise.

3. The strengthening properties of water resistance. 

Water is a great environment to exercise in because it can provide resistance in all directions. A full-body workout is more easily achieved, more muscles can be activated, and the resistance level can be controlled by the speed with which you move through the water.

4. Edema control. 

Exercising in water can help to control swelling. The hydrostatic pressure of the water helps remove excess fluid from swollen feet and legs. The deeper the water is the greater the hydrostatic pressure.

5. Water Jet Massage.

Everybody loves the water jet massage at the end of an aquatic therapy session. The soothing feeling of fast-flowing water massaging sore muscles is a nice treat.

6. The Underwater Treadmill 

And finally, ask any of our aquatic therapy patients at The Rehab Center in New Holland and they will tell you the best thing about aquatic therapy is the under-water treadmill in our state-of-the-art Hydroworx pool. Maybe it is time to try it for yourself. Call your doctor and ask if aquatic therapy is right for you.
About The Author
Chris Knudsen, DPT, is the Multi-site Manager of The Rehab Center with eight outpatient physical therapy clinics in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Graduated with his Doctor of Physical Therapy degree in 2000 from Creighton University. 
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