Aquatic therapy combines the special properties of warm water with physical and occupational therapy to help patients make the best recoveries possible. At Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, we use aquatic therapy to help patients relax and enhance functional movement, boosting confidence and ability.
Aquatic therapy: Our approach
Stretching, walking or other gentle exercises in a warm water therapy pool offer many critical benefits to people who are just getting back on their feet. At Bryn Mawr Rehab, we keep our therapeutic pool at 92°F, the ideal temperature for relieving pain and keeping patients comfortable. The pool has a ramp, stairs and a lift to make it accessible to people with a variety of conditions. The benefits of aquatic physical therapy in a warm water pool include:
- buoyancy that reduces stress on joints and muscles
- gentle resistance that builds strength and endurance over time
- improved circulation
- decreased pain and muscle spasms
- increased range of motion and flexibility
- a sense of relaxation and well-being that encourages exercise
In addition to more traditional water therapy techniques, we also utilize creative therapies in the pool to encourage patients. For weak core balance, we’ve used kayaking exercises to improve side-to-side strength and stability.
Our experienced staff, trained in water safety and therapy, facilitates three aquatic therapy programs to meet inpatient, outpatient and community needs. Our inpatient program operates individual and group sessions five days a week. The outpatient program offers day and evening hours to best accommodate busy participants. Finally, our community program provides a self-pay maintenance option for those who would benefit from continuing aquatic therapy after their physical therapy has ended. A physician’s prescription is required for aquatic therapy at Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital and can be made on an inpatient or outpatient basis.
Aquatic physical therapy patients at Bryn Mawr Rehab, especially those recovering from a severe injury or major surgery, can use water therapy as a confidence-building step to regaining their strength. Many participants are recovering from a sports injury, joint replacement, spinal cord injury, brain injury or stroke. Teens and adults of any age can benefit from aquatic therapy and it can be particularly helpful for those who’d like to keep active despite suffering from arthritis, muscular dystrophy or other degenerative joint disorders.