Harness the unique properties of the water to improve coordination and sensory processing.
 

Aquatic therapy taps into the unique properties of the water to facilitate the acquisition of developmental milestones, and improve coordination, sensory processing, fitness and social skills. It is an excellent supplement to land-based occupational and physical therapy to help your child reach his/her goals and develop a life-saving skill. The warm buoyant water enables your child to feel free and have fun in therapy in a natural environment accessible to the whole family.

AQUA THERAPY

AQUA THERAPY 2021 REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN!

What goals can be addressed in the pool?

The properties of water make the pool ideal for working on strength, endurance, bilateral coordination, sensory processing and motor planning.

  • Are your children afraid of entering the water or putting their faces in the water?  Has your child struggled to learn to swim through conventional swimming lessons? Using their expertise in movement analysis, task analysis and sensory processing, our therapists will assess the causes of your child's difficulty and target interventions to enable them to learn to and acclimate to the water swim.
     

  • Sensory processing: Swimming is a natural way to get powerful sensory input in a short amount of time. The water itself provides deep pressure input to the whole body at once. Constant even water pressure can help decrease the tactile hypersensitivity that your child may experience out of the water. The water also provides proprioceptive input, which boosts body awareness and the sense of body position in space. Changing head position when swimming on the back, front, side, vertically and under water provides vestibular input, which also contributes to the sense of body position in space. Touch, proprioception and vestibular input are the building blocks of body awareness, sense of body position in space, motor planning and smooth motor coordination.
     

  • Strengthening: Negotiating the water requires your child to use all of his/her muscles. Your child’s core, arms and legs, will become stronger using the natural resistance provided by the water.
     

  • Coordination:  In addition to a strong core, swimming requires the coordination of all four limbs in many different combinations: symmetrical, asymmetrical, in-phase, out-of-phase, contralateral and ipsilateral. As your child learns new moves and exercises with a variety of fun, resistive aquatic aids, he/she will learn how to coordinate movement in multiple body parts at the same time, which is fundamental to coordination, motor planning, and learning to swim.
     

  • Social skills and communication: Eye contact and vocalization are often enhanced because of the intense yet calming influence of the water, and the natural boundaries of the pool.

Who can benefit from Aquatic Therapy?

The benefits of Aqua therapy for children with sensory processing challenges:

Constant sensory input stimulates the body with gentle movement and deep touch pressure to improve sensory processing and self regulation. Unique equipment and games motivate your child to challenge him/herself to move through the water in a myriad of ways.

The benefits of Aqua therapy for children with physical handicaps:

 Movement through the water gives children with cerebral palsy and high muscle tone freedom of movement and sensory input that they cannot experience in any other environment. 

The benefits of Aqua therapy for children with developmental delays and/or low muscle tone:

 Movement through the water gives children with cerebral palsy and high muscle tone freedom of movement and sensory input that they cannot experience in any other environment. 

The benefits of Aqua therapy for children with autism:

Aquatic therapy for children with autism focuses on play-based functional movement to facilitate neurodevelopmental growth, motor coordination and sensory processing while having fun! 

The benefits of the pool for children with autism:

  • A calming relaxing environment and success regardless of skill level, which is hard to come by in another milieu

  • Improved sensory processing, including tolerance to touch and opportunities for powerful proprioceptive and vestibular input

  • Engagement and eye contact

  • Social participation

  • Easing repetitive behaviors

  • Increased attention span

  • Self confidence

  • Creating a lifelong habit of exercise and wellness to reduce later risks of obesity and heart disease

Where can I read more about swimming and autism?