Aquatic physical therapy can help! The pool environment provides buoyancy., and this buoyancy provides support to your body by unweighting your body and joints. It also decreases stress on your body and joints, and can make it easier and less painful to move. This buoyancy during aquatic therapy is especially helpful for arthritic and overweight patients.
The resistance of the water provides 12 times the resistance of moving and walking on land. This resistance makes your muscles work harder, yet is usually more comfortable for the patient due to the buoyancy.
Hydrostatic pressure of the water can also decrease swelling, and can aid in improving joint awareness (proprioception) and balance. This hydrostatic pressure helps decrease joint and soft tissue injuries if your walking or movement patterns are dysfunctional or painful.
The warmth of the aquatic therapy pool helps with muscle relaxation and increased blood flow/circulation to injured or painful areas. Patients with low back pain, joint pain, muscle pain, or fibromyalgia would highly benefit from aquatic physical therapy.
Aquatic physical therapy is available at Buchanan County Health Center. Always consult with your physician first before starting an aquatic exercise program.