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Don’t Be A Fish Outta of Water…

…because water may be the best place to enhance your overall health, regardless of your age, weight or physical condition. Water’s unique properties provide an alternative environment capable of improving every aspect of fitness; cardiovascular health, muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, body composition, and emotional well-being.

Buoyancy – The upward force exerted on an object in a fluid, i.e., water facilitates floating. The deeper the body is submerged, the less weight is supported, making it advantageous for overweight, obese, injured, and disabled individuals. The stress and impact on joints and connective tissue is dramatically reduced. Buoyancy provides assistance with exercises that move toward the water’s surface, while it offers resistance for exercises moving away (from the water’s surface).

Hydrostatic Pressure – The pressure exerted by water on an object immersed in it. The deeper the body is submerged, the greater the pressure; this pressure helps reduce swelling and edema following injury or surgery. It also helps remove lactic acid from cells as it is delivered to the liver more efficiently, mitigating muscle soreness.

Viscosity – The resistance between water molecules, creating an opposition to flow. In water, the greater the force applied, the greater the resistance, affording benefits to people of all fitness and skill levels. Additionally, movement in water is slower, controlled and more deliberate, reducing the risk of injury, while promoting muscular balance.

Heat Dissipation – The process by which water absorbs heat generated by the body, allowing for greater exercise intensity without the risk of overheating.

All exercise potentially enhances emotional heath. However, aquatic exercise offers an element of relaxation, even during exercise, magnifying its stress-relieving benefits.

As the wave of aquatic exercise swells in popularity, so does the population it serves. With the advent of innovative aquatic gear, machines and videos, even die hard athletes can benefit from training in water . A qualified physical therapist can design an aquatic exercise program to suit your specific needs and fitness goals. So, dive in and work out, but remember to check with your physician before beginning any exercise program.


This information was provided by HealthQuest Physical Therapy and Wellness Centers: Return to Work, Return to Life, Return to Play.  To learn more about HealthQuest Physical Therapy services and how we can help you recover from an on-the-job injury, regain your independence and get back to living your life, or return to the physical activities you love visit our website at

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Written by Brooks Juneau

July 25, 2008 at 4:06 pm

Posted in Exercise

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