By Michal Sakal, certified occupational therapist.
Exercise in general may help manage Multiple Sclerosis symptoms by improving fitness, strength and flexibility. I would like to recommend hydrotherapy (water therapy) to some people who are dealing with MS.
The unique properties of water can benefit people with MS who suffer from balance problems and reduced muscle strength. Water activity is safe because there is a lower probability of falls and less chance of muscle aches or fatigue.
Hydrotherapy has unique benefits, including: the use of buoyancy force, the use of hydrostatic pressure of water and reduction of body weight. These and more can help strengthen muscles, work on endurance, improve range of motion, reduce pain, relax and improve fatigue. In addition, group hydrotherapy can alleviate feelings of loneliness and improve mental health.
Training programs usually focus on improving balance and flexibility, along with increasing muscle strength and endurance. Classes may include exercises such as: walking in the water, practicing different swimming styles, lifting fingers and heels, games and more.
Which pool to practice?
There are those who would prefer to practice in therapeutic pools where the water temperature is 32-35 degrees. And there are those for whom the high temperature does not do them any good and would prefer to practice in a swimming pool.
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