Aquatic therapy is a form of physical therapy that uses the unique advantages of exercising in the water to reach your rehabilitation goals. The buoyancy of water enables anyone who has a physical limitation to perform exercise in an easier environment than traditional land-based therapy. It is an excellent option for anyone with limited weight bearing status, chronic pain or a history of balance issues/falling.

Aquatic therapy is performed one-on-one by a Crystal Clinic physical therapist or physical therapist assistant who has been trained in aquatic therapy. Sessions take place in a therapy pool, located at Lake Anna YMCA, with comfortable water temperatures of 93o-95o and with a YMCA lifeguard on duty. For patients who have trouble with steps, a hydraulic lift is available to help with transfer into the water.

Before starting aquatic therapy, each patient will complete a land-based physical therapy evaluation, which can be performed at any Crystal Clinic physical therapy location. No physician referral is necessary. Most insurance plans cover aquatic therapy.

Aquatic therapy is considered reasonable and necessary for the loss or restriction of joint motion, strength, balance or function due to pain, injury or illness by using the buoyancy and resistance properties of water.


Patients who would benefit from aquatic therapy include:

  • Anyone suffering from pain due to osteoarthritis, spinal conditions or conditions such as fibromyalgia, which limits their ability to participate in land-based physical therapy
  • Anyone recovering from a surgery or injury with weight-bearing restrictions
  • Athletes looking for an environment to recover with less stress places on their joints
  • Anyone who may have balance or walking difficulties
  • Anyone who cannot tolerate land-based therapy

Who is NOT appropriate for aquatic therapy?

  • Anyone with open wounds or incisions – you must be six weeks removed from surgery
  • Those with bowel or bladder incontinence
  • Anyone who currently has a contagious or infectious disease
  • Other reasons that aquatic therapy may not be advisable exist and can be discussed with your physical therapist

For more information, call (330) 670-4216.