3 ways to maximize your performance with hydrotherapyAugust 25, 2017 | by Erin Bussin
Earlier this year, we talked about hydrotherapy as a mechanism for recovery and rehab from injury. Hydrotherapy, in an underwater treadmill, can also be a valuable tool in reaching performance goals.
In fact, a study performed at Texas A&M University showed that resistance training in combination with an underwater treadmill program reduced soreness, body fat, and inflammation while improving muscle mass and strength.
This articles breaks down three different aspects of strength and conditioning that can be done in the hydrotherapy pool in order to maximize athletic performance
Power is the sum of force and speed. In the hydrotherapy pool, athletes can generate maximum power with minimal impact. Athletes can perform max sprints and jumps without the strain of vertical ground forces.
Explosive jumps can be varied by the amount of water placed above the hips, allowing for graded resistance. Additionally, jumps can be performed vertically, laterally, and with the treadmill in motion. The hydrotherapy pool is a great place to cross-train for power sports involving sprinting and jumping.
2. Cardiovascular Endurance
Running is one of the most common exercises in the underwater treadmill. During a run, the heart and lungs work together to deliver oxygen to all the hard working muscles in the body.
Due to the natural resistance of the water and the resistance jets, an athlete’s arms and torso need to work harder while running. At a challenging intensity, running in the hydrotherapy pool will improve energy efficiency, oxygen utilization and muscular endurance.
3. Postural Stability/Balance
Whether it’s walking, running, or performing a double legged squat, the hydrotherapy pool challenges an athlete’s postural stability, balance and body awareness. During movements, the water will bounce off the surrounding walls and push back on the moving body.
Resistant jets are also used during exercises to challenge an athlete’s stability and balance. Researchers have found that participants are more challenged doing static balance exercises in water versus on land, and that these exercises help improve neuromuscular coordination and postural control strategies.
Do you have a performance goal you are trying to reach? Visit our website to learn more or call us today at 604.292.2501 to ask how our underwater treadmill can help you get an edge on your training.
*Hydrotherapy requires a referral from your doctor, physiotherapist or health care provider.
- Lambert, B., Greene, N., Joubert, D., Green, J., Crouse, S. “Aquatic Treadmill Training Enhances Strength and Lean Mass Gains When Combined with Resistance Training”. Texas A&M. www.hydroworx.com.
- Louder, T.J., Bressel, E., Baldwin, M.D., Dolny, D., Gordin, R., Miller. “Effect of Aquatic Immersion on Static Balance” (2013). All Graduate Plan B and other Reports. Utah State University. Paper 247
- Porter, Ryan. “Metabolic-Cost Comparison of Running on an Aquatic Treadmill With Water-Jets and Land Treadmill With Incline” (2012). All Graduate Plan B and other Reports. Utah State University Paper. 105.