Aquatic Therapy

Aquatic therapy uses the properties of water (buoyancy, drag, hydro-static pressure) to allow kids to work in a fun and engaging environment. Physical therapy and occupational therapy perform strengthening activities using the resistance created by the water. Physical therapy is able to work on balance activities with improved participation due to the decreased weight bearing and slower reaction times needed.  The buoyancy of the water also allows kids to move in ways they wouldn’t otherwise be able to accomplish, giving them freedom they would not normally have on land. Occupational therapy uses the proprioceptive input created by the hydro-static pressure and resistance in the water to perform sensory strategies. The warmth of the water allows tight or stiff muscles to relax allowing better range of motion during activities. Speech therapy is able to use aquatic therapy as motivation and proprioceptive input for increased communication. Oral motor skills and adequate breath support are also addressed by speech therapy in order to improve a child’s verbal output and volume.