Aquatic Therapy

The CHS Aquatic Therapy Program is a multifaceted program offered to both inpatients and outpatients as an adjunct to land-based treatment or as a primary treatment intervention. Aquatic therapy improves function through the application of aquatic therapeutic exercises.

Every Catholic Health Services Rehabilitation Hospital features a unique specialized centerpiece service: an indoor, temperature controlled Aquatic Center. These state of the art indoor pools allow therapists to use this unique environment to facilitate and augment traditional rehabilitation hospital treatments.

Our facilities offer the community aquatic programs which complement traditional rehabilitation approaches. State of the art pools and therapeutic interventions are utilized by physical and occupational therapists with specialty training.

The aquatic environment promotes the overall rehabilitation and personal fitness of an individual. Basic aquatic principles of buoyancy, resistance, and hydrostatic pressure are applied to the biomechanics of movement patterns.

Conditions which may benefit from aquatic therapy include but are not limited to:

  • Orthopedic conditions including fractures, joint replacement, amputations and soft tissue injuries
  • Neurological conditions inclusive of CVA, brain injury, Parkinson’s disease
  • Pain conditions and back injuries
  • Debility due to medical complications and /or disuse, atrophy.
  • Arthritis
  • Diabetes
  • Geriatrics
  • Obesity
  • Mastectomy
  • Pre and Post Natal

Therapeutic Goals:

  • Improvement of cardiopulmonary fitness
  • Improvement in range of motion and muscle strength
  • Improvement in gait
  • Improvement in posture
  • Decrease in pain
  • Decrease in abnormal muscle tone
  • Reduction in tactile defensiveness/hypersensitivity
  • Improvement in balance, reaction time and safety during ambulation
  • Improvement in flexibility

Specialized treatment techniques include:

  • Ai Chi: A form of active aquatic therapy molded after the principle of Tai Chi and yoga breathing techniques.
  • Aquatic Therapeutic Exercises: A form of active aquatic therapy which incorporates various exercises, activities and functional mobility in the water to improve awareness, coordination, gait, endurance, posture and trunk stabilization.
  • Aquatic PNF: A form of active aquatic therapy modeled after the principles and movement patterns of Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation. The individual is instructed verbally, visually and /or tactilely in a series of functional, spiral and diagonal mass movement patterns while standing, sitting, kneeling or laying in the water.
  • Bad Ragaz Ring Method: A form of active or passive aquatic therapy. The individual is instructed in a series of movement or relaxation patterns while positioned horizontally and supported by rings or floats in the water.
  • Back Hab: A form of active aquatic therapy based on a walking program in the pool using a variety of strides and stretching exercises to increase overall fitness, to eliminate low-back and hamstring inflexibility, to improve postural alignment, and to strengthen the abdominals.

Benefits Include:

  • Enhancement of circulation which promotes healing
  • Improves cardiovascular fitness which often accompanies injury or illness
  • Impedes muscle atrophy and contractures which may occur in absence of exercise
  • Application of weight bearing to upper and lower extremities in a graded or progressive manner
  • Decrease in pain caused by muscle tension
  • Assistance with movements of the limbs against gravity
  • Application of resistance in a graded or progressive manner
  • Reduction in spinal compression forces during exercise
  • Decrease in muscle tone and spasticity
  • Increase in amount of time to recover from loss of balance episodes

Referral /Admission Process:

  • For Outpatient services, request a prescription for physical or occupational aquatic therapy from your physician.

Please contact us for more information regarding our aquatic therapy programs today!