Hydrotherapy is used to treat rheumatic, orthopedic and neurological disorders. It has been the subject of investigations regarding balance recovery in elderly people.
To evaluate the effect of a hydrotherapy program for static and dynamic balance in elderly men.
This was a quasi-experimental before/after study. The participants were 28 healthy sedentary elderly men aged between 64 and 79 years (14 in the experimental group and 14 in the control group) were evaluated using two tests: the Sharpened Romberg test (static balance with eyes open and close) and Timed Up & Go. The subjects underwent, subsequently, a low to moderate intensity hydrotherapy program for balance, which consisted of three phases: a phase of adaptation to the aquatic environment, a stretching phase and a phase of static and dynamic balance exercises. The program was applied for 8 weeks, with three sessions per week, each session lasting one-hour. The elderly men were reassessed after the eight weeks of the hydrotherapy program. The data were analyzed statistically by means of Student’s t test for paired samples.
Hydrotherapy promoted significant increases in the elderly men’s balance, as assessed using the Sharpened Romberg test (p< 0.001) and the Timed Up & Go test (p< 0.001). Conclusions: It can be suggested that this hydrotherapy program for balance gave rise to an increase in balance and a possible reduction in the risk of falls among these aged men.