Hydrotherapy, otherwise known as Aquatic Physiotherapy, is a specific form of physiotherapy treatment conducted in a heated pool and incorporates individual assessment, diagnosis to formulate a treatment program appropriate to each patient’s needs.
By combining hands-on pool based physiotherapy treatment techniques and specifically designed exercises supervised by physiotherapists with specific training, hydrotherapy helps regain or enhance physical well-being in a warm relaxing environment. A series of gentle therapeutic exercises (distinct from swimming or aqua-aerobics) carried out in a heated pool allow greater comfort and range of movement as the water supports body weight. Therapeutic exercises can be progressed safely using the resistance of the water to strengthen the muscles and improve stability. Patients do not need to be able to swim in order to benefit from Aquatic Physiotherapy.
Benefits of Hydrotherapy
- Muscular relaxation and decreased muscle spasm.
- Decreased pain due to warmth and support.
- Gravity is countered by buoyancy.
- Increased muscle strength and endurance due to the greater resistance in water.
- Improvement in swelling, due to hydrostatic pressure.
- Enhanced balance, co-ordination and stabilisation.
- Improved enjoyment and confidence to move better.
- loosening tense, tight muscles and encouraging relaxation
- increasing the metabolic rate, circulation, digestion and immune function
- hydrating the cells, improving skin and muscle tone
What conditions can Hydrotherapy benefit?
Some of the many conditions that can benefit from an individualised Aquatic Physiotherapy program include:
- Back pain/sciatica/lumbar instability
- Whiplash & other neck pain
- Sports injuries
- Balance/coordination problems
- Shoulder and arm pain
- Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis & Fibromyalgia
- Ankylosing Spondylitis
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Back and pelvic pain during pregnancy
- Weight loss
- Rehabilitation after bone fractures, joint replacement or tendon repair