CASE STUDY – HYRDOTHERAPY POOL IN DORSET
We finished a hydrotherapy pool in Dorset recently for a disabled customer who had struggled to find the right pool for his needs elsewhere on the retail market. He was repeatedly offered a variety of traditional hot tubs, which would not have met his needs adequately.
The pool would need a seating bench at the optimum sitting height for the wheelchair user customer, with grills to allow therapeutic airflow into the seat. There would need to be flat floor space in front of the seat to accommodate a physiotherapist, plus the option to attach seatbelt straps to the bench for the user’s safety.
We produce several custom pools every year for users with specific needs and wishes (including canine hydrotherapy pools) and we have designed and supplied several hydrotherapy pools to customers with physical disabilities in recent years, so we were well placed for the job.
A Jetswim 4 metre one-piece pool – out smallest flat-bottomed pool – was the best model for the intended use of the pool and the space available, so we worked with our pool manufacturer on the south coast to produce a sitting bench integrated with the pool at just the right height and angle to keep the customer at a comfortable height within the water and slightly reclined for safety. The pool was to be installed above-ground in a purpose-built pool house, with a wet room area and hoist.
CNC machine technology was used to cut grills into the seat to deliver therapeutic blasts of air. Temperature, pressure and movement of water was to be controlled by a Piezo switch situated outside the pool so it could be operated by a carer or therapist.
As hydrotherapy pools are not used for swimming laps, they run at around 35 degrees centigrade, whilst a swimming pool is usually kept at around 28 degrees. As such, the finish of the pool must be robust enough to withstand these prolonged, higher temperatures. Our fibreglass gelcoat is ideal for the job: r
• The warmth of the water has an effect on the individual neuro-muscular junctions, resulting in increased muscle tone and decreased spasticity.
• Buoyancy of the water aids the movement of joints.
• Movement in the water and water pressure helps to reduce residual lung capacity for people with chest and lung problems.
• Creating turbulence around a limb can increase one’s awareness of the limb and help with mobility – both in the water and later on dry land.
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