Park JS. (2011). Postural balance of stroke survivors in aquatic and land environments

Introduction to Stroke Rehabilitation Stroke rehabilitation is crucial for recovering lost functions and improving the quality of life in stroke survivors. With the increasing incidence of strokes, innovative rehabilitation methods are continually being explored. The study by Jungseo Park et al. investigates the effects of aquatic and land exercises on chronic stroke patients, focusing on joint position sense and clinical functions.

Aquatic vs. Land Exercise Programs The study divided participants into two groups: one underwent land exercises and the other aquatic exercises, in addition to receiving general conventional treatment. The land exercises aimed at strengthening trunk stability and balance, while the aquatic exercises utilized buoyancy equipment to enhance balance and mobility. Both groups showed significant improvements, but aquatic exercises led to more pronounced enhancements in joint position sense and mobility assessments.

Mechanical Properties of Water in Rehabilitation Aquatic exercises leverage the mechanical properties of water, such as viscosity and buoyancy, to stimulate proprioceptive sensory receptors effectively. This environment allows for safe, supported movements that reduce the risk of injury and fall, making it particularly suitable for individuals with limited mobility post-stroke. The study’s findings align with previous research, suggesting that aquatic environments offer unique advantages in stimulating physical proprioceptive senses and enhancing rehabilitation outcomes.

Clinical Implications and Future Directions The results underscore the potential benefits of incorporating aquatic exercises into stroke rehabilitation programs. While land exercises remain effective, the addition of aquatic therapy could offer a more comprehensive approach to improving joint position sense and overall physical function in stroke patients. Further research is needed to explore the long-term benefits and potential integration of aquatic therapy into standard stroke rehabilitation protocols.

Keywords: Aquatic exercise, Land exercise, Joint position sense, Mobility assessment, Stroke recovery

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