Aquatic Therapy

Advantages of Aquatic Therapy

Aquatic Therapy (hydrotherapy) is at least as effective as physiotherapy, with water treatments presenting many advantages.

Our buoyancy in water facilitates reduction of our body’s weight, which in turn lessens pressure on our joints, muscles, and skeleton. This allows aquatic therapists to apply a wider range of movements, some of which that are impossible outside of the water, especially post injury.  

​Due to the reduced effects of gravity in water, in combination with the appropriate practice by the therapist, hydro-therapeutic rehabilitation is recommended by various health practitioners for increased mobilisation and reduced muscle tension and pain, for example experienced with disc herniation or joint diseases, as well as reducing stiffness, muscle spasms, and spasticity, associated with other health conditions.

Aquatic therapy also positively contributes to our emotional system. A session in the soothing aquatic environment, in the hands of an experienced practitioner, can have far-reaching effects beyond the physical experience,

offering a sense of freedom from everyday concerns and a profound state of wellbeing.

 

A number of water treatments are available for emotional support, which build confidence and help the release of various emotional pains and tensions.

Performed in a warm and safe environment aquatic therapy enables people to feel supported and potentially become free of stress and pain.

 

Furthermore, these advantages, featured in a carefully designed therapeutic environment, can promote independence among people with various physical and mental disabilities.

Some of the potential immediate benefits of aquatic therapy present after a first session include: increased range of motion and muscle relaxation, and decreased muscle spasm, spasticity and pain. Long term effects following multiple aquatic therapy sessions have been shown to include: decreased anxiety and emotional and physical pain, improved healing and immune system response, better sleep patterns, and improved digestion. 

Which treatments are available with us?

Aquatic therapy treatments are generally appropriate for people of all ages, those suffering most medical conditions, or those simply wishing to unwind physically or mentally.

 

​There is a range of disciplines within each of the below categories, and Aquanat composes the most appropriate combination of these to address each client’s unique needs.

 

Aquatic Bodywork/Passive forms of Aquatic Therapy

 

Include Watsu®  (‘water shiatsu’), Healing Dance®, and Waterdance®, all of which use combinations of flowing movements through the water along with gentle invitations to the client’s body to soothe, release and mobilise. They are all excellent methods for releasing tension, helping with pain management and relaxation.

Collectively, they are referred to as Aquatic Bodywork. Learn more here...

Who can benefit from Aquatic Bodywork treatments?

Absolutely anyone. 

And particularly anyone who:

  • Wants to relax and slow down.

  • Wants to be nurtured.

  • Loves the warm water.

  • Loves massage.

  • Is experiencing pain.

  • Is experiencing stress.

  • Likes gentle stretching and movement.

  • Wants to explore self-awareness.

  • Likes to try something different.

  • Needs therapeutic touch.

 

Halliwick

 

Halliwick is an approach to teaching all people, in particular those with physical and/or learning difficulties, to participate in water activities, to move independently in water, and to swim.  

     

According to the Halliwick Concept, physical properties of water form the basis for therapeutic intervention as activities in water have a great physical, personal, recreational and social benefits.     

      

The Halliwick Concept focuses on bio-physical principles of motor control in water, in particular by developing a sense of balance and core stability together with the consideration of humans’ emotional needs for mental adjustment and a sense of independence. 

This method promotes independence and is usually performed in groups. The instructor leads the group of carers with their clients towards swimming independently. This method is especially beneficial for people who require enhancement of their sense of security. 

 

Watch what Halliwick is about here...

 

Water Specific Therapy (WST)

 

Water Specific Therapy (WST) uses the Halliwick method and principles to treat impairments of body structure and or function, as well as develop strength, stabilisation of the core / spine and joints, stimulate activation of muscles, and a range of motion. 

Skills and constrictions of the client are considered in order to identify the desired outcome and design the WST intervention plan to help clients increase function, independent and participation.

Who can benefit from WST?

  • Those who are geriatric and pediatric with compromised body function 

  • Healthy clients with Injuries

  • Those with neurological, musculoskeletal/orthopedically challenges

  • Those who suffer/ed: back surgery, multiple injuries following trauma, stroke and brain injury, spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy with hypotonic or stiffness of muscles, multiple sclerosis, many types of arthritis (osteoarthritis, rheumatoid, ankylosing spondylitis - all results in different level of movement impairments).

Hydrotherapy for Babies

Designed to help babies:

  • Who present symptoms of developmental delays

  • Who require specific enhancements in order to develop motor skills and strengthen their muscles

  • Had a traumatic birth experience

Organising your session

When you arrange your therapy session with us, we ask you to fill a form and answer several relevant questions to assist us understand your circumstances. This helps us specifically design our sessions for you.

One on one sessions with a qualified practitioner

 60min - $150    90min - $200

One on one sessions with SE (trauma resolution) with a qualified practitioner

60min - $180    90min - $230

One on one sessions with a trainee (student in training under supervision)

 60min - $60    90min - $90

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Our Australian Institute for Aquatic Bodywork offers training and certification for aspiring therapists or those wishing to extend their practice.

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Looking for a unique gift idea?

Why not give someone a Gift Card!

Thoughtful, easy, and great for any occasion.

Aquatic Bodywork Testimonials

I discovered Aquanat when looking for Watsu sessions in Perth. The space at Mosman Park is great and the sessions were very therapeutic. Meeting Anat has been a life changing experience. She is highly skilled and experienced, compassionate, kind and naturally gifted in working with people of all ages in the water. During my first session, she made me feel at ease and safe, and the Watsu was a deeply moving experience. I have no hesitation in recommending Anat and Aquanat to anyone considering Aquatic Therapy Sessions or Swimming Lessons for babies and children. Thank you Anat!

Fiona

Meeting Anat has been a life changing experience...

Watsu? All I knew was that it is based on Shiatsu massage but it takes place in water. Anyone who has laboured / birthed in water or even been pregnant before knows the helpful properties of water, the only way when pregnant to feel fully physically supported is in water.

Slightly nervous but more curious and filled with anticipatory excitement I entered Anat’s gorgeous circular pool. I had seen children swim in he pool and looked on at them smiling and playing comfortably, effortlessly in the water and yet you really don’t fully appreciate this space until you are

completely emersed in the warm water with the spectacular dome encapsulating the space and yet allowing air and light to filter through. It truly sets the scene for a relaxing, pampering experience.

This coupled with the fact that I am a busy mum of 2 young ones, one fully breastfed, and well needles to say I was very eager to surrender to the ways of Watsu and allow myself to feel whatever was to come.

What unfolded, after Anat gently introduced me to the water and what I would experience in my Watsu hour was pure bliss, like nothing I have ever experienced before. Once I completely let go and allowed the water to take over (at times I was completely unaware of Anat’s presence) I was transported away from daily life and stresses and went somewhere either inside or outside of myself, I am not sure, perhaps both. Wherever it was it felt good to be there.

 

Most of the time emersed in water just past your ears, you can’t help but be at times be hyper aware of the physical, due to the amazingly therapeutic stretches you are achieving without, yourself moving a muscle and then secondly, by the soft water racing over your skin past every part of your body. It truly is a full body massage like no other.

 

Then like polar opposites your physical self seems to dissolve into the water and you are but a spiritual mind in the safety of the water protected from outside influences by the physical, almost sacred space you are in. Time just to think - allow your thoughts to race and then to slow.

 

At times I felt like a dolphin dancing an amazing routine through the water, or a ballet dancer lighting up the stage with her solo, strong, independent and free and then I would find myself curled up like a baby and feeling completely nurtured.

 

I think you would have guessed I really enjoyed my Watsu experience, overall I left feeling whole, calm, deeply relaxed but also re-connected with myself. Although my description sounds quiet intense and yes I found it somewhat of a spiritual and emotional experience, it is important to say that it didn’t leave me emotionally vulnerable or raw. If anything it left me feeling stronger and more accepting of the emotions that may have arisen and I certainly didn’t feel like I needed to go and confront them any further.

 

I instantly recognised the benefit Watsu would have for pregnant woman, firstly it seems an ideal pampering tool due an affinity with water created by pregnancy and due to achieving weightlessness. Secondly I think Watsu would be a useful tool in birth preparation; as to gain the most benefit from Watsu one needs to completely surrender, a lesson we all learn in birth (if not previously) due to the immense power of life giving forces.

Rochelle

"My First Watsu" (on Watsu and Pregnancy)

The moment I stepped into the water I felt my whole body sigh with relief. The temperature was that of a carefully drawn warm bath, one which I run when I want to lose myself in the water, suspend the outside world and return to one of life’s simplest pleasures, the sensation of being immersed in warm water.

As the session began and Anat drew me towards her and placed the floats around my limbs, the sensation was one of complete surrender to the water, a sensation of memory, familiarity and, at the same time, a completely new experience. As my body was moved and stretched and twisted and rotated through the water, I felt a freedom that is not available on the ground, a feeling of being suspended in warmth and

comfort.

 

The close proximity to the practitioner creates, without doubt, a very intimate experience but one in which I felt totally safe and free to feel whatever there was to feel. At times my entire body was submerged so that only my nose was above the water line, enabling me to listen to the sounds of my own breathing and the strange dull quality of silence and solitude that being under the water provides.

 

As my body moved through the water and the resistance of the water pushed and pulled at my limbs I gave up my own resistance to the movement and allowed my body to work with the water and the movement in ways that were clearly specifically designed and intended, feeling the stretching that came with that movement in a way that was not dissimilar to the satisfying elongation of muscles when stretching on waking or at the end of a tiring day.

 

Some people describe Watsu as an experience of returning to the womb. That description is a little too ‘new agey’ for me but there was something entirely comforting and nurturing about freely moving in the water, being cradled and supported by someone who clearly loves what she does and being able to experience movement of my own body in ways that were surprising and satisfying.

Justine

About Watsu

Im up to my neck in hot water. My head is cradled in the left arm of Anat Juran, an Israeli-born aquatic body therapist, who with both arms and legs is able to massage, stretch and pull various limbs and muscles while swirling my body around the indoor swimming pool. With my eyes closed and breathing gently regulated, the sensation is extraordinary as my upper and lower spine, back, neck, shoulders, arms and head are massaged, manipulated and relaxed in ways that are simply not possible on dry land…. miraculously free of every stress and tension knot, every ache and pain with which I began the treatment.

In the early 1980’s Harold Dull adapted Zen Shiatsu in warm water and called this unique technique Watsu (Water Shiatsu in English). Watsu spread worldwide and is presently practiced in clinics, hospitals

and spas, not only in the US and Canada, but also in Japan, throughout Europe, Brasil – and now in Australia. Psychologists, psychiatrists, physical therapists, massage therapists, and lay people

are all enthusiastic about the benefits of giving and receiving Watsu.

 

For more information about the world-wide association involved in Watsu and associated techniques, go to www.waba.edu

 

Aquanat is the first centre in Australia offering both aquatherapy and training. The environment at Aquanat is especially created to facilitate many programs. Watsu, waterdance, Halliwick and Auanatbabies are some programs offered at this beautiful centre. Aquanat boasts a large circular pool, surrounded by a geodesic dome, which allows for a natural flow of air and light. The water within the pool is heated to a

constant 34 – 35 degrees and creates a welcome, soothing, comforting and nurturing ambience.

 

For further information regarding aqua/hydrotherapy, baby classes or for a brochure, contact Anat.​

Andrew Conway

Article from Luxury Travel Magazine

Whether you are a therapist happy to explore something new or whether you’re just someone who has an interest in body work water work, this short basic watsu course can give you a whole new dimension of relating to an other and yourself.

 
You learn how the water can become a channel to many things and you learn to work with the qualities of this element. In the water the fundamental low of gravity dissipates, movement slows down as it cuts trough a denser sphere and learning how to work with this 2 main differences is so new exciting and yet calming. 


Letting the water do the work and supporting the process is such a beautiful thing to acquire, you learn to observe and still your mind to read your partner and connect to your intuition. For me these things are so replenishing and healing even as a giver.
By the end of the second day you learn to give a whole 45 min to an hour water session to someone with some really cool moves, its great.

The work on land is brief but covers the main guidelines of ethics movement and relating and it is a nice time out off the water, we even did few interesting exercises with breath and imagination as well as sharing our experiences in an intimate group environment which we developed straight from the start.

These 2 days are such a present, I was in a bubble full of healing and love. Anyone can do this and everyone should.  I strongly believe that this 2 days journey was as deep for me and other thanks to the experienced and passionate group leader we had not to mention the amassing pool and the beautiful facility attached to her house.

 

If you’ll take this course with Anat you'll probably need no words to describe the essence of this work once in her hands. 

Basic Watsu Student 1

About Basic Watsu course with Anat Juran

This amazing two days in the water were life changing.
Next visit to Australia this beautiful pool and classes at AQUANAT are defiantly going to be in our itinerary, not to mention the great beaches and wonderful time we had in travelling.

Basic Watsu Student 2

About Basic Watsu course with Anat Juran

It’s only 2 days but it feels like a whole as now I can give a full session. Each of the stances and moves are making so much sense and they flow one into the other creating a rhythm inside the placidness. Magic, prodigy, brilliant, simple species…… and so many other words. 
You learn so much and it feels like you are only traveling in a joyful journey. 

Basic Watsu Student 3

About Basic Watsu course with Anat Juran

After just one professional session of watsu I was so amazed about this blissful way of treating people. For me it the experience went far beyond the benefit for my physical wellbeing, but it reminded me of how we can spread so much peace by the the use of gentle touch.


After I did Basic Watsu I wanted to tell the whole world about it and practice as often as possible.

 

Anat, you did a wonderful job teaching us basic watsu. You went far beyond teaching us just the essential knowledge. You shared with us some of your beautiful insights, about what you get, if you open yourself to perceive and interact with people in such a peaceful way!

Basic Watsu Student 4

About Basic Watsu course with Anat Juran

As the facilitator of this learning experience you were so much passionate and committed to deliver the knowledge. You gave me so much support and at the same time so much space to strive when I was challenged. I wonder how did you know when to let exert oneself or to come to a rescue? That’s greatness!! Thank you so much! 

Basic Watsu Student 5

About Basic Watsu course with Anat Juran

Anat, your total commitment to each one of us separately and as a group, with so much creativity, yet full of joy and humour maid a significant impression on us all.

Basic Watsu Student 6

About Basic Watsu course with Anat Juran

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