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Benefits of Aquatic Therapy for Children

January 26, 2017

Splashes, giggles and floating noodles – these may not be typical words one associates with a child’s therapy session. However, aquatic therapy utilizes toys, physical activity and warm water to improve function and independence.

Aquatic therapy is a fun, safe and effective way to accomplish therapeutic goals for patients of all ages, especially children. Aquatic therapy can be utilized with children who have developmental delays, gross motor delays and neurological, genetic or orthopedic disorders. Warm water therapy pools have temperatures ranging between 92 and 94 degrees Fahrenheit and varied depths from three to four feet.

Using the water’s buoyancy, children learn new skills and/or perform exercise that is difficult for them on land. The water provides assistance, support and resistance to movement, allowing children to increase:

  • Balance
  • Coordination
  • Strength
  • Endurance
  • Range of motion and flexibility (easier to stretch in warm water)
  • Head and trunk control
  • Mobility
  • Motor learning
  • Participation in functional activities
  • Sensory processing and feedback

Children participating in aquatic therapy do not need to know how to swim. Therapists use a variety of equipment and toys to support movement and provide a fun experience. A lifelong benefit of aquatic therapy is that children may discover a love for water, something that can be shared with their friends and family well into the future.

To get help locating an outpatient location with pediatric aquatic therapy, call 1-888-44-REHAB (73422).