Updated: Feb 10
As you know, I continue to gather information that shows the benefits of aquatic stroke therapy. That is, as a stroke patient is recovering, it's using the water as a means of physical therapy and healing. While anyone knows who has ever floated in the water, eyes closed, immersed in the supporting liquid, water is life. So it only makes sense that restoring life to a stroke patient can be supported in the water.
Today, I am happy to report on a study by two scientists who did significant research to look into whether there is scientific proof that aquatic therapy is beneficial for stroke patients. Not to keep you in suspense, but I can happily report the answer is "yes".
In their study, the authors noted that the dynamic of buoyancy of water was key. Using the force of the water allows patients to perform movement they could not do on land. The water further relieves the person's body weight, allowing them to exercise more actively. At the same time, the fluidity of the water continuously activates muscles to stabilize the patient.
Here was my favorite line of the study. "The biological effects of water immersion involve essentially all the homeostatic systems of the human body." I mean, it's fancy and all but I probably would have just written "I feel one with the water"!
The authors conclusion was music to my ears. They happily concluded that they had found "definite evidence regarding the efficacy of aquatic therapy for individuals affected by strokes". Of course, we already knew that.