Immersing the body in water has many physiological effects, which have been reported since nearly the beginning of recorded history.
Aquatic exercise is especially beneficial to arthritis sufferers for several reasons. Water provides a remarkable medium for heat transmission, buoyancy, and resistance, which makes it possible to carry out exercise with minimal stress for those with limited mobility.
Hot tub therapy facilitates the relaxation and the strengthening of muscles, ligaments, and tendons. The high capacity heat of a hot tub can provide much relief to Arthritis sufferers.
The heat application from a hot tub provides the following benefits:
- Increased flexibility of tendons
- Decreased joint stiffness
- Pain relief
- Pain threshold elevation
- Muscle spasm relief
- Increased circulation
The shallow water of a hot tub offers a range of aerobic workout opportunities such as water walking, water aerobics with calisthenics, incorporating good body mechanics, and exercising with lightly resistant aquatic equipment.
The water buoyancy in a hot tub offsets body weight and supports weak bodies. When submersed to neck level, a persons apparent body weight is one-tenth of their actual weight, which enables the weakened person to move with freedom. Strength training with weights can be introduced slowly. First, it is suggested that the arthritis sufferer performs underwater calisthenics exercises with no weight, and then gradually increase weight as strength improves.
Thermospas suggests the following hot tubs for hot tub exercise and therapy:
- The Healing Spa was specifically designed for Arthritis sufferers and was the first hot tub to receive the Ease of Use Commendation by the National Arthritis Foundation.
- The Olympic Hot Tub is the only spa that has built in resistance bands with an adjustable seat – perfect for aquatic exercise.
- Swimming is an excellent low-impact exercise that can be performed all year long with Thermospas Swim Spa. Resistance bands can also be used for a full body workout.