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Dorothy and Ray Cox, married 60 years, both attest to the benefits of aquatic therapy for recovery from joint repair and replacement surgery. Their experience also highlights one of the sometimes overlooked advantages of exercising in water: improved balance.
Ray has had two hip surgeries. He focuses on walking against the Endless Pool's resistance and the use of light weights for upper-body conditioning.
Therapists endorse aquatic therapy as particularly beneficial for relearning walking and other everyday movements. Without the pain of impact caused by land-based exercise, patients no longer need to prohibit their movements. As warm water promotes circulation and mobility, its resistance increases strength and endurance.
Dorothy's regimen involves the serial use of four 20-minute audiotapes developed by her therapist following replacement of both knees. These include extensive leg-stretching, simulated bike-riding, sweeping arm movements, jogging, walking, resistance exercises, and lifting aquatic dumbbells. She also swims vigorously enough to have lost 14 pounds in the past year.
Accompanied by music, the workout is soothing to the psyche as well, Dorothy points out. "I'll endorse it readily on several points."
Like many Endless Pool owners, she and Ray love to share the benefits of their pool's use with others who find relief from pain with therapy in the warm, cushioning feel of water. Regular visitors include neighbors who suffer from back pain and fibromyalgia.