How Aqua Therapy Helped Me Overcome New Challenges

Because of my disability, I take a modified gym class, which means I don’t participate in gym the traditional way. I participate in aqua therapy sessions and I am graded on that instead. Although we drive an hour and a half away on Fridays to get there, I love aqua therapy because my body feels free in the water. I have different goals that I want to accomplish and I’ve made some progress. My arms and legs can flow freely. I can float for 20 minutes uninterrupted.

Now, I used to get anxious thinking about floating without the support of feeling someone’s hand on my back. Now I feel like a pro. Aqua therapy helps me with my muscle strength and bone movements. These are some things that are restricted a bit while I’m in my power wheelchair but, the seating I have helps to keep me comfortable while I’m in my wheelchair.

My mom had to go away for a few months on a job assignment. She was worrying me to death calling home every day to make sure we were okay. I know it was hard for her to be gone so I wanted to have a surprise for her when she returned. I talked with my aqua therapist and asked if I could work on a new goal of holding my breath for an extended time under the water. I have lung disease and my muscles are very weak, so this was a big deal for me if we could pull this off.

I am unable to lift my head out the water so we came up with a plan that once under the water, I would move my head slightly to the left when I am ready for her to lift my head out of the water. We practiced for months. I was happy with my progress.

When my mom returned from her business trip, my therapist told her that I had a big surprise for her. As I was placed on the assistive water chair lift, I told her that I’ve been practicing holding my breath under water. Once my head went under, she started recording. I finally came up after 48 seconds. She was so excited and I was so happy.I had challenged myself and beat my previous record, which was 45 seconds. I’ll be working on another challenge for myself in the coming months and don’t be surprised if it’s TikTok!

About Morgan Steward: Morgan is an honorary police officer for the Covington Georgia Police Department. He uses the Stretto Power Wheelchair for mobility. Morgan is an active member in his community and enjoys helping others. Click here to learn more about Morgan.