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Water/aqua therapy..pros? Cons?

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Recovery Area' started by MsPhyne, Jun 6, 2011.

  1. MsPhyne

    MsPhyne Junior Member

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    Hello all!!
    Since My Manipulation on 5/16/11/ My extension went from 30 to 13 as of 6/2/11.
    I'm still hurting, walking with the limp. I have been using the ankle weights across the knee but that hurts after 10 minutes.
    I then recalled Water Aerobics, but I an not able to get in or out the pool just yet. Called my Therapist and tomorrow I start the treadmill in the water.
    Has any one here used Water Therapy? heard anything good or bad about it? because I'm getting real tired of this knee not extending!:hissyfit:, the pain i am sure you all know how it is and it has been 3 months this past Saturday,6/4/11 and I'm still on a cane!!! will this EVER end!?

    let me know
  2. flhiker

    flhiker Junior Member

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    Ms Phyne (great pic, btw),
    Water treadmill? I would be interested in hearing about that strategy. I haven't gotten in a pool yet (almost 4 mos post-op), but my gym has a pool, and I've been thinking about trying. Let us know what your PT has in store for you, and good luck!
  3. MsPhyne

    MsPhyne Junior Member

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    FLHIKER
    Yes apparently they have a treadmill that can be used under water. I called the local YMCA just to pay daily as I used the pool to get me well, they said I had to have a membership. I do not want one, I will do water aerobics when i am stronger and able to get in and out the pool with no assistance. I will post tomorrow when i get done, Hope it is going to help me with swelling and pain.
  4. Josephine

    Josephine Administrator

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    How strange! I'd never heard of one of those either but just last night I was watching a programme about the Help for Heroes charity and how it's made possible all this amazing rehab for our men injured in combat in Afghanistan, and would you believe it - there was a water treadmill there! Never seen such a thing! My immediate reaction was "ooooh, I'd love to try one of those"! Might actually enjoy walking for a change! (I hate walking!)
  5. Creation

    Creation Member

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    Hi,
    I have been going to the pool 3xweek since I got the OK from my surgeon (3weeks post-op). I have found over the last 2 1/2 weeks that it has been very benificial.
    In the water, there is almost no weight, so some of the pressures we feel outside are not there. I found a lot of new sensations in my leg. I am actually able to feel a better stretch of my quads.
    Luckily our pool at the YMCA has stairs and railing, so it is easy for me to go in and out.

    One exercise I do is water cycling: Being a good swimmer I do not need a flotasion device but anyone can do this exercise with a flotasion belt or a "nooddle" under your arm and wrap around you. I place myself like if I am sitting on a recubent bicycle and then I pedale in the water with me feet in a flex position.
    For now my right leg seems to ride a big bike and my left(TKR) a little bike. But I have noticed that the stretches are gentle and that everytime I go my left leg does bigger circles.
    I also walk in the shallow end, I do normal walking, then I walk with my knees high (as high as I feel a tension!). I do gentle slow (very slow) kicks by holding the edge of the pool. I listen very carefully to my body and I do only exercises that give me no Pain, just tensions and stretches uncomfortable level.
    One last exercise I do is deep end jumping jacks. With a noodle under my arms, I open and close my legs gently. I notices that I am getting stronger and I have increased slightly my speed.

    I also do all the exercises I was told to do on the ground in the water. Lying on my back with a nooddle under my arms, I do the sliding exercise, the bend and lift etc...

    What is important to remember is to go at your pace, listen to your body and never do something that causes Pain in the knee.

    There is also a hot tub, and I have found this to be awsome, my muscles feel so happy when I go in.

    I have found the following book to be very helpfull with water rehab:
    Total Knee Replacement & Rehabilitation - The Knee Owner's Manual. Its is written by a OS and a PT.

    Try to find in your town a pool that can accomodate you (stairs, railing, hottub). I have found that for me it is really helping and that when I come out of the pool I feel relaxed, happy and my knee feels good about its workout!:thumb:
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  6. RestAssured

    RestAssured Forum Advisor

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    Well. since my swim spa hasn't appeared on our patio yet, I think I will go to the new fitness place and sign up! They have 3 different pools for different exercises, and I think that would help strengthen the inside of my leg!

    Thanks for the great ideas Creation! I will use those when I am there!:yahoo:


    Ms. Phyne, I know you are frustrated, but I have heard of the underwater treadmill, and it has produced some fantastic results for people who are having a very rough recovery!:wink1:
  7. skigirl

    skigirl Moderator

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    Ma Phyne, I used a lot of pool exercises after my tkrs. I found, like Creation, that it helped with gentle stretches and increased my rom.

    I also did the cycling and "running" in the water. I would wear a floatation belt and then run in the deep end. It always helped and it also helped my mental attitude. I always felt wonderful when I left the pool.

    My club has a therapy pool that is warmer too--so, I do use that when I work on my stretches. Our club allows you to join for a month or so---why not check out if the Y allows you to join for a shorter time. After a month, you will probably see a change in your rom. Kelly
  8. MsPhyne

    MsPhyne Junior Member

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    Re: Water/aqua therapy..pros? Cons?-UPDATE

    OK all.. I had my first Hydro Therapy session today and I thank GOD I did what i did!:thumb:
    When you get there, you get in your bathing suit and prepare yourself like you do when you go to the pool,(shower off any oils on the body) The Therapy machine has a treadmill with a seat in it. You step in and they fill it with warm water, i walked forward for 5 minutes, backwards and side was, both direction 5 min. then i put the leg on the seat to do hamstring stretches. now,I did feel the muscles in my legs working but no pain. when it was over, it felt like I worked out but my pain level was at a 3.
    after the water comes the traditional stretching and massaging of the hamstrings, the water helped me relax to allow the therapist ot help me with my bending and stretching with minimal pain. my bend was 85 on 6/7 its now 105 today!!!:yes 4: my extension is still at a -13 but that was from being at 30 3 weeks ago. NO SWELLING!!! NO THROBBING PAIN!!!

    I know I made a good choice to change, my fears are lessening now that I am seeing progress,I will not have too much resistance to the pushing on my leg. and I truly believe that I maybe able to get to 110 and 0 by the end of the month!
    Keep praying for me!! As I do pray for all of you!
  9. RestAssured

    RestAssured Forum Advisor

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    Yippee!:yahoo:

    I am so happy for you! Keep up the great work and you better believe the prayers will be coming your way!:wink1:
  10. Josephine

    Josephine Administrator

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    minus 13? :scratch: Really?
  11. Creation

    Creation Member

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    Isn't the warm water just wonderfull for the TKR leg. :amen1:Glad you tried it and found great results. My knee always feels good after I come out of the pool!
    Congrats on the 105, keep gently working it to keep your achievements!
  12. MsPhyne

    MsPhyne Junior Member

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    Josephine. that's what the PT therapist said i think she meant +13 because i think a minus be double jointed lol! sitting here now with my leg up on 2 big pillows with the dynasplint, small icepack and 10 pound ankle weights.... tomorrow recumbent bike and stretching then pool monday... oh yeah.. homework too!!
  13. Josephine

    Josephine Administrator

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  14. MsPhyne

    MsPhyne Junior Member

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    My extension is now at 8 I got a really tight hamstring issue.. what more can I do to help get it to loosen up more?
  15. Creation

    Creation Member

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    When I go at the pool, I found that bending my knee back (toward my back) in the deep end seemed to pull that muscle more than on the ground and I usually fel a really good stretch. Also the PT game me a belt that I thigh up on my ankle and I gently, gently pull my leg with knee bent to the back, bring my my hips foward until I feel that pull on my hamstring. I know it is hard but as time goes by, you find the best way to stretch that puppy!

    Oops forgot, you can also in the water walk with your knees "high" it pulls it all!
  16. MsPhyne

    MsPhyne Junior Member

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    Hello all I been MIA because I lost my password but im back I an 4 mo. on July 3rd, weak quads and tight hamstrings are my vice now! I ordered a muscle stimulator and will be using it this week.I just do not understand why is it i lay down on my back, my knee sits high, but i sit up, it lies flatter?:what: I have not been to sleep before 10 pm in weeks and I an now down to 210 pounds and things with hubby are not so good.:cry: He thinks I am not working hard enough but at the same time, when i ask for his help with stretching he gets an attitude and can get kind of mean and gets upset:hissyfit: when I tell him it hurts. I have decided to not ask him anymore,to keep us both sane!
    I have attached a couple of photos of the aquaciser and me prepping for the water to come in, the circles you see are used to force the leg to go straight in the water and helps me get more toned in the thighs with underwater leg lifts.
    I missed you guys a lot and so glad to be back to read others postings, its 3:27am CST. got a heat pad on the hamstrings hop it makes a difference later today!

    Attached Files:

  17. kneeworn

    kneeworn Graduate

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    I saw on the news last night that there is a zero gravity treadmill. It was developed to train the astronauts for space. They have found it helpful for people rehabing tkr. You get in and it has a cuff of sorts that reminds me of a skirt on a kayak that fits around your waist. They fill the chamber up with air to exert pressure on your lower body and achieve zero gravity. This one lady was using it and was in love with it. She said it really helped her ROM.

    My neighbor with the pool is going on vacation next week and said I'm welcome to still come over and use her pool. I'm going to do it. Then if it works for me I'm going to join the gym or Y and start using a pool there.

    Thanks for starting this great thread Ms Phyne

    Donna
    LTKR 12/06/2010
    Left knee manipulated 05/13/2011
  18. Josephine

    Josephine Administrator

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    Your hubby thinks you are not working "hard enough"? :DOH: How about telling him this is recovery and more about resting and letting your body heal. You're not in training for a marathon or the Olympics, you are healing and working hard is the last thing you should be doing!
  19. RunA42K

    RunA42K Forum Advisor

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    A girl friend of mine here in Houston is married to a doctor who specializes in pain management and rehabilitation. He has a water treadmill in his office. Me and a couple of other friends of the doc and his wife went and used the water treadmill after office hours once. It was a great workout! At home since I have a pool in my backyard, I mostly use a noodle and sit on that and peddle all around the pool. If anything, I find later on that I have done too much. Since in the water it is so easy and you don't really feel any pain I dont know when enough is enough! I have to figure that out. When I do get out of the pool my knee works so well, but will stiffen up later on in the day/evening.

    Bonnie
    RTKR 3/28/11
  20. PhoenixS

    PhoenixS Forum Advisor

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    I think that water exercise is wonderful. Much less stress on the joints and allows us to really work the muscles. I overdid it my first few times, and when gravity set in I barely made it to the dressing room, but it was amazing for the ROM, and the relaxation in my lower back, which has been made worse by this surgery.
    Best of luck with it.
    Ms.Phyne, are those REALLY your shoes????
    Sandy

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