Water recreation is great fun whether swimming, diving, snorkeling, or even boating and kayaking. Doing any of the above for physical rehab is not so amusing. It is strenuous and takes a toll on mind and body. There are many ways to recover from an accident or injury, and exercises in a pool, for example, is quite common. It is usually given by a therapist on top of a workout in a kind of specialized gym laden with equipment that teaches people how to walk and maintain better balance if they have had an amputation and intend to wear a prosthesis.

In a swimming pool, a patient can tread water or do the crawl to strengthen the upper body. He or she can perform a variety of movements using the liquid as resistance. You don’t even need a very large pool to undertake most kinds of rehabilitation. The water is refreshing as you strive to achieve personal goals. It is not on a par with water recreation for its own sake, but as you grow stronger, the pleasure aspects will replace the strenuous tasks. No matter your initial attitude, you will come to love the benefits that swimming can bring.

Aquatic physical therapy is a distinct field of rehab medicine if conducted by a trained professional. Assistive devices can be used or not according to the task at hand, the age of the patient, and his or her condition. The musculoskeletal system is addressed along with cardiovascular and pulmonary improvement. Over all, working out in a pool helps motor strength function, aerobic endurance, balance and coordination, agility, body mechanics, flexibility, locomotion, and let’s not forget relaxation. Whatever can be done in a water environment will help rehabilitation in some manner. Ultimately it should be somewhat pleasurable.

Recovery brings on the possibility of either returning to normal sports activities or trying new ones. You want to test your body out and see where you stand. Many people scuba dive and enjoy diving near coral reefs to see the wonders of the deep. They don’t need prosthetic devices to manage. The same goes for enjoying some time in an ocean kayak. I am not sure I would go so far as to waterski or use a Jet Ski, but given the opportunity and some instruction, it is not in the realm of impossibilities.

A point of great pride along the path to recovery is the ability to do challenging things that often test the mettle of normal people. Normal is a loose term, mind you, designating only that the person has no disability to speak of. There is no reason, experts say, that the disabled can’t enjoy activities like water sports if they are missing a limb. We all know about the Soul Surfer Bethany Hamilton. Nothing could stop her return to the waves. She showed the world that a disability is no deterrent in life if you haven’t lost your sense of adventure.

So I am here to say that engaging in any water endeavors will not only help you heal, but they will boost your spirit and inner strength. Losing a leg, as I well know, is no excuse for idleness.