Key Takeaways

  • Provide a warm water exercise program for older adults in your community, focused on exercises for different abilities. 

AEA Arthritis Foundation Aquatic Program is a recreational group exercise program conducted in warm water (a minimum of 83 degrees F) that consists of two levels, Basic and Plus, to accommodate different ability levels. Exercises in the Basic level improve range of motion, muscle strength and endurance; the Plus level offers more variety and progressions.  Programs offer multiple components to help reduce pain and stiffness, and to maintain or improve mobility, muscle strength and functional ability. Endurance-building routines, relaxation exercises and health education topics are also included.

Note: Track health promotion program guidance during COVID-19 regularly for updates to program implementation and training options. Programs traditionally implemented in-person may be temporarily allowable by telephone or online.

  • Target audience: Adults with arthritis, related rheumatic diseases or musculoskeletal conditions, ranging from people who are older, sedentary and very limited by impaired joint mobility to those who are relatively active with only mild joint involvement
  • Health outcomes:
    • Overall sense of well- being
    • Better quality of life
    • Reduce pain/inflammation
    • Increase social interaction
    • Fun, safe and effective way to promote better health
    • Improved joint function
    • Increased muscular strength
  • Delivered by: Trained Program Leaders
  • Program type: Group
  • Format: In-person in community
  • Length: 11 or more sessions OR ongoing
  • Training: Online self-paced for the Program Leader Training Course
  • Professional required: Yes
  • Accessibility adaptations available: Yes
  • Cultural adaptations available: Yes
  • Available in languages other than English: (Spanish 2021)
  • Topic(s):
    • Behavioral Health
    • Chronic Disease
    • Falls Prevention
    • Pain Management
    • Physical Activity

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