A Look at Our Pool Therapy Room
Today I want to tell you all about our Pool Therapy Room! First, I want you to know that we have a security system on the outside of our Pool Room. We have this because the Pool Room can be a very unsafe room if it’s not monitored properly. A lot of our clients struggle with impulsivity and want to just jump in whether it’s safe or not, so we take precautions. We have a key to the room that’s set way up high, out of the reach of any children. We also have a second key that’s combo locked. This room is constantly locked. Whenever the door is shut, the room is locked. A key must be used to get inside the room every time.
This room also has clear glass doors so that we can monitor all the activity in the Pool Room. This way no one can be alone in the room, and no one is able to sneak in.
When you walk into the room you’ll see some very large blue pads on the wall. This is not for aesthetics, it’s for soundproofing. We have many clients here who do not tolerate echoing noises or sound. We actually have this in our waiting room, too! You’ve seen our colorful panels in the Cutting Edge colors. They are not there because we like big squares! They’re there because we want your family and your kiddos to be comfortable here. Many of our kids have extreme sound sensitivity.
The temperature of the room and pool
We monitor the temperature of the Pool Room. It’s kept quite warm, usually in the upper 70s. The pool is often kept quite warm, at 93-94 degrees at all times. When you first walk into the room you’ll find that the pool is covered—this helps the pool stay warm. We do not pull the cover off until the pool is about to be used.
How we monitor your child’s progress
We also have a television monitor in this room. We use this to record the activity going on in the pool, to record progress and treatment. We are able to view everything, and also to download part of it if we need to for an insurance company. We also have waterproof iPads that we can use to record specific treatment segments. Below the TV screen, you’ll find specific instructions on how to control the pool, as well as our exercise protocols.
Platform for smaller kiddos
On one side of the room, you’ll see a platform. This actually goes inside the pool to use with our smaller kiddos. The pool water goes almost up to the height of an adult. There is a shallower end, but sometimes it’s not quite shallow enough. This platform helps make the pool more comfortable for the smaller kids. Then we have our fun stuff—balls, pool noodles, wedges, things to float on, flippers—lots and lots of equipment!
We have lots of pictures of the therapy pool on our social media. When you first get a look at this pool it may be a little different than you were expecting. The pool goes to 4.6 feet, and it has stairs for the kids to walk down into the water. There’s a treadmill in the bottom which is hooked up to a “brain” on the side of the pool. This runs like any treadmill you would have in your home or at the gym. We can set it to a certain pace, and we have several different ways of using the treadmill for therapy. We also have jets inside this pool. The “brain” also controls the force of the jets. We can use the jets to create a nice “lazy river” effect.
So as you can see, we have many different options for therapy in the Pool Room. Aquatic therapy has been extremely popular for our population of kiddos because many of our clients perform better in the water than they do on land. You would be surprised at the difference it makes to take away the gravity factor! Water also provides strong sensory stimulation. It gives the kids a lot of sensory input and it calms them. This therapy is powerful, especially for clients on the spectrum. We get excellent participation in the water!
Aquatic therapy is a growing program here! It’s particularly done by our physical therapists. (Although we do a lot of co-treatment with speech and OT in here. You’d be amazed at what we get done!) If you’re interested in aquatic therapy talk to your therapists or give us a call! We’d love to talk to you about it!