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Swimming pool will benefit disabled

Before casting your vote on the swimming pool issue, County Proposition number one, this Nov. 7, consider one point that has had little publicity. The value of the pool for hydrotherapy.

Hydrotherapy (water therapy) is a water based exercise therapy program designed to relieve back pain and to condition and strengthen muscles. This type of therapy is proving to help strength and give mobility to people with spinal cord injuries.

Julie Huntington, the mother of Greg Huntington who received a spinal cord injury in a car accident, says the water therapy has helped him regain some movement. She has been taking Greg to Price three times a week for water therapy. On the day of the therapy, she blocks out at least five hours for the trip to have an hour's worth of therapy.

"If the pool in Castle Dale is built, it would save us a great deal of time to go there for the therapy. I know of many Emery County residents who are making the trip to Price for this purpose. A pool in Castle Dale would not only help us, but many citizens. This therapy helps anyone who needs therapy following a surgery or anyone who is elderly and trying to maintain mobility," said Julie.

"This swimming pool would meet the therapeutic needs of all the county residents. The therapist in Price told me that she sees many, many Emery County people. I feel that to build a pool like this would help everyone at some time or other," continued Julie.

The physical properties of the water make therapy more effective in many cases. The buoyancy of the water helps support the weight of the body in a controlled fashion.

In spinal cord injury cases, the patient is put into a hydraulic chair and lowered into the water. With weights on the feet and wearing a life preserver, the patient receives the therapy in a medium that does not restrict movements. There is no friction in the water, and this allows the muscles to strengthen while reducing the risk of further injury.

"Greg is beginning to be able to feel the temperature changes in the water in his lower back. He can also sense the pressure from the jets around the edge of the pool. This pool will help not just those with spinal cord injuries, but the elderly residents can come for therapy. This type of therapy does not stress the joints. There are many more benefits this pool would provide to everyone, especially the handicapped," concluded Julie.

The pool in Castle Dale that has served the county for many years is now closed permanently.

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