Hydrotherapy, also known as aquatic physiotherapy or aquatherapy, is a therapeutic activity that consists of performing exercises in a pool with heated water, around 34ºC, to accelerate the recovery of injured athletes or patients with arthritis, for example.
Generally, hydrotherapy is performed by a physical therapist and is widely used by pregnant women and the elderly because it helps in the treatment of:
- Arthritis, arthrosis or rheumatism;
- Orthopedic problems such as fractures or herniated discs;
- Muscle injuries;
- Joint pain;
- Swelling in the legs;
- Breathing difficulty;
- Neurological problems.
Hydrotherapy for pregnant women should be indicated by the obstetrician and is usually used to improve blood circulation, reduce leg swelling and decrease pain in the back, feet and knees, for example. Learn other ways to relieve discomfort in late pregnancy.
what are the benefits
In hydrotherapy, due to the properties of water, it is possible to reduce the load caused by the weight of the body on the joints and bones while maintaining resistance, allowing muscle growth, but without causing damage to other parts of the body. In addition, heated water allows muscle relaxation and pain relief.
Hydrotherapy helps to reduce posture problems and conveys a sense of well-being, improving individuals’ body image and increasing self-esteem. In addition, it also contributes to:
- Muscle strengthening;
- Relief of muscle or joint pain;
- Improved balance and motor coordination;
- Promotion of muscle relaxation;
- Decreased sleep disorders;
- Reduction of stress and anxiety;
- Increased range of joints;
In addition, hydrotherapy also contributes to improving the cardiorespiratory system, as well as hydrogymnastics, in which the exercises practiced are more intense.
There are several therapeutic hydrotherapy techniques and aquatic exercises, which must be accompanied by a physical therapist, such as:
1. bad ragaz
This technique is used to strengthen and re-educate the muscles and to promote the lengthening of the trunk. Generally, the therapist stands and the patient uses floats on the cervical, pelvis and, if necessary, on the ankle and wrist.
Typically, this method is used in people with Central Nervous System injuries, orthopedic disorders, or people who have decreased range of motion, weakness, pain, or low back pain.
two. Comprehensive aquatic relaxation
This technique uses the properties of heated water, between 33º and 35ºC, having relaxing effects on the Autonomic Nervous System. During exercise, rotation and stretching of the trunk are promoted, with rhythmic and repeated movements, reducing visual, auditory and sensory stimuli.
Generally, this technique is indicated for people with orthopedic problems, after spinal surgery, low back pain, with repetitive strain injuries and occupational diseases related to work and for people with reduced range or pain in movement or people with neurological problems.
O Watsu It is also performed in a warm water pool, at about 35ºC, through specific techniques in which movements, touches and stretching are performed, unlocking points of physical and mental tension. In these sessions, specific exercises are performed that take into account the person’s breathing and position.
This method is indicated for cases of physical and mental stress, fear, anxiety, insomnia, muscle pain, migraine, lack of disposition, depression, acute and chronic tensions, pregnant women, people with emotional blocks, among others.
Also called the 10-point program, it is a process in which the patient works on breathing, balance and control of movements, thus improving motor learning and functional independence, making the person more able to initiate and perform movements and activities that are difficult to perform. be carried out on the ground.
This method is performed with voluntary movements of the person, even if he lacks mobility.
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