Hydrotherapy has significant benefits and is effective at treating joint pain and swelling, as well as soft tissue stimulation and growth. Scientific evidence based effects show hydrotherapy can also improve mental and physical health. In contrast to land-based exercises, aquatic exercise is extremely low impact and reduces the stress typically placed on joints during conventional land-based exercise. Hydrotherapy techniques can help people stick to a workout plan whilst providing pain relief. Due to its many benefits, aquatic therapy is a great way to achieve symptomatic relief, without medication or invasive treatments. When performed by a qualified physiotherapist or exercise physiologists, hydrotherapy is safe and has little to no side effects.
This blog will outline the key health benefits of hydrotherapy techniques:
- What is hydrotherapy?
- Health benefits of aquatic therapy
- Hydrotherapy at AHP Connect
What is hydrotherapy?
Hydrotherapy, also known as pool therapy, water therapy, or aquatic therapy, is any physical activity performed with the body submerged in water to treat chronic diseases, conditions, and reduce pain symptoms. It is typically conducted in a swimming pool, however hydrotherapy can also take place in specialised hydrotherapy tanks, a warm bath, or floatation devices. Aquatic exercise can encompass the use of hot water, warm water, cold water, dry ice packs, and pressurised jets.
The benefits of hydrotherapy are achieved through the manipulation of water properties such as buoyancy and hydrostatic pressure. Warm water promotes muscle relaxation and allows an individual suffering from pain or stiffness to move their body and exercise freely. Usually, hydrotherapy is incorporated as part of a broader symptom management or treatment program to address concerns such as weight loss, balance, pain, muscle strength, and chronic diseases or conditions such as knee osteoarthritis. Pool based exercise can also be performed in conjunction with traditional land-based physical therapy.
Health benefits of aquatic therapy
Water based exercise can be of great benefit for your body, and overall health status. A standard treatment session of hydrotherapy will involve different temperatures, water flow, and pressures to promote blood flow and treat physical and mental symptoms of various health conditions.
Reduces muscle aches, pain, and tightness
A key benefit of hydrotherapy is reduced muscle aches and tightness, as well as pain management. Hydrotherapy reduces weight bearing to focus on guided, controlled movements with the ultimate goal of providing pain relief. The warmth and buoyancy of the water promotes muscle relaxation and therefore reduces muscle spasm. Warm water can also cause blood vessels to widen, which can improve blood circulation to painful areas, speeding up the healing process. It can be extremely beneficial for those who suffer from injuries or musculoskeletal conditions that are worsened by weight bearing or land-based exercises. The reduced muscle tightness can also result in improved flexibility.
Eases joint pain
As a result of your body being supported by the water mass, hydrotherapy is a low impact way to exercise that can assist individuals to treat joint pain and inflammation. Performing hydrotherapy in waist deep water can reduce weight bearing on joints by up to 50%, and in-turn can ease joint pain.
Improves fitness and range of movement
Hydrotherapy is an excellent treatment modality for improving fitness and range of movement. It can be performed as part of strength and conditioning training or rehabilitation to improve posture, mobility, cardiovascular health, and coordination. Whether you are recovering from an injury or simply looking to improve your balance and coordination, hydrotherapy can assist you in achieving your fitness and movement goals.
Faster recovery from workouts
Athletes will often use various forms of hydrotherapy to achieve faster recovery from workouts. The type of hydrotherapy most commonly used for this is contrast hydrotherapy. Contrast hydrotherapy involves alternating between warm and cold water and has been shown to have a positive effect on post-workout recovery and preventing delayed onset muscle soreness.
Hydrotherapy at AHP Connect
At AHP Connect, our health and wellness centres allow all your allied health appointments to take place in one central location. Our clinics can provide you with the ultimate holistic wellness experience. Offering a wide range of wellness services including podiatry, hydrotherapy, speech therapy, and physiotherapy, our health practitioners can tailor a treatment program to accommodate your needs.
To experience the many benefits of hydrotherapy, contact our friendly team on 1800 111 247 today to schedule a session.