The healing properties of water have been known and harnessed by many civilizations since antiquity. Today, that still holds true. At LifePointe, two pools provide physical therapy and aqua fitness classes that benefit many types of clients.
Monica Sands of Martell is a believer in the healing powers of water. When a year of physical therapy brought her little to no relief after knee replacement surgery, she felt discouraged. “I struggled for a year after my knee replacement, with doctors telling me it would just take time,” she says. Still, she wasn’t getting better, and the swelling and pain were taking their toll. “I felt like I had traded one bad knee for another bad knee,” she says.
Monica Sands finds the warm water therapy pool at
LifePointe has greatly improved her recovery from a
knee replacement surgery.
Finally, Sands saw a different health care provider who discovered that she had other problems that contributed to her bad knee. In fact, she learned, osteoarthritis in her lower back coupled with hip and ankle issues, helped to cause her knee pain and degradation. “I wasn’t using my body correctly,” she says. The provider sent her home with a brace and a prescription for warm water therapy at LifePointe.
There, Sands worked for a month with physical therapist Cindy Fluitt, doing the same type of rehabilitative exercises she would do “on land,” such as walking, balance activities and lower extremity strengthening exercises. But in the water, there is much less weight on the joint, and hence, there is less pain. “Warm water in itself is therapeutic,” Fluitt says. “And the compressive force of the water helped with her swelling. When patients like Monica don’t have to bear their body weight, they are able to do the initial therapy with less pain, then transition to land-based therapy, which is, of course, the ultimate goal.”
At LifePointe, the warm water therapy pool is a comfortable 92 degrees, and the ramp into the pool (which is called zero entry) means that those who have difficulty getting into conventional pools — even patients in wheelchairs — can access and benefit from the warm, healing waters.
According to Sands, those waters have done the trick. Now doing the water therapy on her own, she can walk without her cane and says she’s felt more progress in the few months at LifePointe than in the previous 10 months of land-based therapy. Her trainer is working with her on land-based routines now, and she is feeling more positive every day about getting back to her normal life. She’s even started to lose weight, another factor in her health issues.
“My strength and endurance is so much better,” she says. “I don’t think I would be where I am today without the warm water therapy at LifePointe. Everyone is so helpful and friendly here. Not just the staff, but the other members, too. There is a lot of support and that makes you want to continue,” she says.
Sands now is a member at LifePointe and looks forward to joining some of the aquatic fitness classes offered in the other heated pool at LifePointe.
Kristi Beyer is an exercise physiologist and health coach who teaches some of the many water classes at LifePointe, which are separate from the physical therapy services. She says she’s not surprised with Sands’ success in the water.
“Water is a unique medium where those with all abilities can benefit,” Beyer points out.
LifePointe’s water options include lap swimming, Aqua Jump Start, Aqua Strength and Stretch Express, Arthritis Therapy, and Deep Water Dynamics, to name a few.
“There truly are many, many benefits of working out in the water — muscle endurance and toning, cardiovascular fitness, improved flexibility, improved core strength, less stress on the joints, your body temperature stays cooler, and so many more,” Beyer says. “And, if done correctly, you can burn as many calories as you can with a comparable land-based exercise.”
To learn more about the aquatic classes and opportunities at BryanLGH LifePointe, visit the Warm Water Therapy information page or call 402-481-6300.