Over the past year as COVID’19 caused us to run a restricted service, our Next Steppers have missed out on a substantial amount of their essential physiotherapy and hydrotherapy requirements. As of yet we are unable to measure the impact that this has had on the individuals that we support as we are still unable to access the provision.
Why Is Hydro So Important?
Hydrotherapy involves stimulation and gentle exercise in water at a constant temperature of 33-36 °C. As a bonus, pools often integrate multi-sensory equipment such as lighting and sound to stimulate the senses. The gravity free hydrotherapy environment offers multiple physical and physiological benefits.
A few of these benefits are…
- Loosens tight muscles
- Assistance with joint movement
- Improving spatial awareness
- Improved breathing
- Boosts immune system
- Stimulates blood supply, improving the function of internal organs
- Relief of pain and muscle spasm
- Freedom of movement increasing independence to standing in water
Problems We Currently Face…
- Prior to the pandemic our transport was occupied primarily for accessing ‘local’ therapeutic activities, thus restricting our Next Steppers opportunities to access leisure and social activities.
- We had access to only two hydro pools in the area that are both at schools and are primarily used for their own students.
- The hydro available slots are limited to off peak times such as lunch times or after school hours which when taking into account travelling and meeting personal care needs means the actual numbers we can find slots for do not meet the ever increasing demand we are experiencing.
- Within the school holidays, we cannot access these hydrotherapy pools at all, which has a large impact on the services we offer.
Since the pandemic landed in the UK we have had zero access to any Hydrotherapy Pools meaning our Next Steppers have missed out on 1 years worth of the benefits from Hydro. We are currently contacting our previous providers to see when they may be able to open the facilities again though it is unlikely to be early 2021 and at that point we revert back to the problems we were previously facing.
Fantastic news – Work begins!
After years of planning, fundraising and fine tuning we have now kick started the Project! The excavation work begins at our King Cross site for our very own on site Hydrotherapy Pool, the pool will be 5mx3m and will include changing LED lights with a sound system in the room to set the therapeutic scene.
We are continuing to fundraise for the development, if you are able to help in any way please do get in touch.
We are immensely thankful for all of the support we have received in donations from friends, businesses and Grants, their support is invaluable to all at Next Step.
Watch this space!