Aquatic Therapy

What is Aquatic Physical Therapy?

Cornerstone Physical Therapy and Wellness has Bluffton’s only Aquatic Therapy Center. Aquatic Therapy is a very useful tool in returning patients to their normal activities. Our aquatics program can be used by a variety of patients. Post-surgical, post-stroke, and athletes of all ages in return to sport. Patients who cannot exercise on land benefit greatly from the water. The unique properties of the aquatic environment enhance treatments for patients/clients across the age span with musculoskeletal, neuromuscular, cardiovascular/pulmonary conditions.

What is the difference between “aquatic physical therapy” and “aquatic exercise?”

Based on research conducted by the APTA (Academy of Aquatic Physical Therapy) aquatic physical therapy requires the “skilled service” of a Physical Therapist (PT) or Physical Therapists’ Assistant (PTA) which may include:  

  • The clinical reasoning and decision-making skills of a PT/PTA;
  • The patient has impairments and/or disabilities which can be minimized or eliminated with aquatic physical therapy; and the patient has potential to maximize functional goals/outcomes to improve quality of life and ease burden of care
  • The implementation of such therapy must comply with all standards of care which impact all other treatment services

Aquatic Exercise, on the other hand, is the utilization of water for the implementation of quality of life, fitness-related or general health-related goals; can be delivered in a group setting that includes multiple clients and diagnoses; can be delivered by an individual other than a licensed physical therapist or physical therapist assistant; and usually has little or no accompanying paperwork, insurance involvement or written follow-up information required.

True One-to-One Physical Therapy