- Sara Hartje
WHAT IS IT? Skilled treatment method used to enhance functional abilities. The therapists uses the properties of water to enhance a therapy program in a fun and natural environment.
WHAT ARE THE PROPERTIES OF WATER?
Buoyancy: The upward pressure of the water on an object, resulting in floating.
Hydrostatic Pressure: Pressure exerted by a fluid on an object. Proportional to the depth measured from the surface. Pressure is exerted in all directions equally.
Viscosity: Resistance of water.
Thermodynamics: Effect of temperature of the water on the body.
HOW DO THESE PROPERTIES HELP?
Buoyancy: Allows for assisted movement, unweights a person reducing gravitational demand and allowing for greater ease of movement. -- Children may feel a sense of freedom of movement that they don't feel in any other environment
Hydrostatic Pressure: Provides joint support and stability to assist with body awareness, brain body connection, and balance. Re-directs blood flow to the chest to improve efficiency in the cardiorespiratory system and facilitate safe cardiovascular strengthening. Reduces inflammation and assists with pain management. -- Understanding position in space and challenging skills in a multitude of environments is what improves function and safety.
Viscosity: Provides resistance for strengthening and allows increased time for motor response and balance control. -- Providing the optimal challenge is what brings about the most progress.
Thermodynamics: Warmth of water facilitates relaxation and tone management for reduce pain and increased mobility. -- A calm mind and body is one that can learn and perform.
WHO CAN BENEFIT FROM AQUATIC PT? People who have...
Orthopedic concerns/Post-Operative Decreased endurance
Abnormal muscle tone & poor postural control Poor breath control
Impaired gross motor skills Neurological conditions
Poor balance, coordination, or gait Sensory or motor difficulties
Decreased strength & range of motion Delay in motor milestone achievement
Aquatic physical therapy helps build confidence and can assist in building self-esteem as well as, gross motor achievement
WHAT IS THE RESEARCH SAYING?
The Benefits of Aquatic Physical Therapy for Children
A Systematic Review of the Effects of Aquatic Therapy on Motor Functions in Children with Cerebral Palsy
The Effect of Aquatic Therapy on Functional Mobility of Infants and Toddlers in Early Intervention
Pediatric Aquatic Therapy on Motor Function and Enjoyment in Children Diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy of Various Motor Severities