Water Exercise, Basic Walking (Aquatic Therapy) – Ask Doctor Jo

Cannon ball! Hey everybody, it’s Doctor Jo! It’s a beautiful day to do some aquatic therapy. A big thank you to my uncle for letting us
borrow his pool for the day. Today, I am going to show you some aquatic
therapy gait exercises. This is just to get you warmed up, get everything
stretched, get everything moving, and then I’ll show you some other videos for the exercises,
and everything. In the pool, it’s very easy to not have proper
technique. It ‘s very easy to just swing your body, be
all over the place, but it’s really important to work on your technique because you don’t
have to worry about falling. So it’s all about exaggerating your techniques
and getting the stretches you need. So starting off it’s going to be simple walking
forwards and backwards, and sideways, and some marching. But it’s really important to do the proper
technique. When we are walking, naturally we hit our
heel first, and then roll off onto our toes. If we have an injury, then we don’t necessarily
do that all the time. So just exaggerated the movement. Try and keep your body upright while you are
walking. Hitting your heel first, and rolling off onto
your toes. Heel first rolling onto your toe, keeping
your body upright. Again, heel first, push off on your toes. See, I’m still keeping my upper body nice
and straight. I’m not leaning forward, I’m not leaning back. I’m keeping my body upright. Do that about 3 or 4 laps. Then you are going to go backwards. Now your toes are going to hit first. So toe, roll back on your heel. Toe, roll back on your heel. It’s really easy to start leaning back. Try not to lean back. If you leaning back, you’re going too fast. Toe, heel. Toe, heel. After you do that about 3 or 4 times, the
next one is going sideways. Sidestepping. With sidestepping, it really for people to
end up turning their foot out. You want to keep your toes pointed straight
the whole time. Because if you turn your foot out, you are
using different muscles. We want to work the outside of our muscles
right now. So keep those toes pointing forward, not out,
but stepping with those toes forward the whole time. Sidestepping, keeping that upright posture. Tuck those tummy muscles in, and then come
back. Then the next one is going to be marching. Bringing the knee up, alternating sides. So pulling that knee up as close to the surface
as you can get. Again, not leaning back, not leaning forward,
keeping that body upright. Really driving that knee up. So those were the basic gait exercises in
the pool. Those were your aquatic therapy exercises. If you have any questions, leave them in the
comments section, and if you would like to check out some other videos, go to askdoctorjo.com. Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook and
Twitter. Remember, be safe, have fun, and I hope you
feel better soon!


  1.  I was looking for exercises to help my mother improve her knee pain and improve gait after surgery. These exercises look like something she can do. Thank you and  Ill let you know how it goes

  2. thank you soooo much!!! having knee issues ,post surgery on one leg from cartlidge loss last june…now stalling on the left leg i wanna try the stem cell stuff before committing to another awful surgery on the left one…in the meantime i need water therapy..looking for a good therapist in the las vegas area….please let me know if you are connected to anyone in my area….this is a great video thank you!!!

  3. +Laura Stone It appears you have a contact block on your account…So here is my response:

    I was unable to respond to your comment on my video.  I don't know anyone personally in that area anymore, but I will ask around with my co-workers, and get back to you if I find anyone.  Lots of times you can do a google search of PT reviews by customers/patients.  Yelp has a good one.  Then you can get honest opinions from the people who got service from the PTs.

    Good luck! 

  4. Can water pressure hurt your back if you have bulging disc…After walking in the pool my back hurts so much more…why is that

  5. Doctor Jo, my son recently got out of his cast after suffering a Salter Harris Fx. He is 12 years old. Can you offer any advise for strengthening exercises through aquatic therapy as well as regular strengthening?? Thanks for any help you can provide.

  6. I'm having a lot of pain in my hips and Dr said pool exercises is the best. Is these walking exercises good for strengthening hips and knees. I have bone spurs in hips.

  7. Hi Dr Jo,
    Is there a specific program that you recommend after arthroscopic hip cam-ectomy/labral repair/ microfracture? I've been going to the pool as much as possible and its really helping but all I've been doing is walking, squats, calf raises, and leg side raises. I'm going on 9 weeks post-op and walking a little bit without crutches or a cane now…just looking for a little more challenge!  I will ask my PT clinic if they have anything else I can add as well…

  8. Dr. Jo I've noticed in a couple of your water vids you seem to have weights on your ankles? I've had a stroke (20 years ago) and it seems that these ankle weights would help me walk more correctly in the water? I'm in the pool everyday! Your vids help me SSOO much!! MANY thanks!

  9. Hi Dr. Jo,
    Recently i've been suffering from sciatica and ive developed a foot drop in my walking, can you help me with some possible exercises to help with this? Love your videos, thanks!

  10. Hi there, I have hip bursitis and a meniscus tear in the opposite knee. Is there anything you're doing that I should not do? Thanks! I'm getting back in the water!

  11. I exercise for 1/2 hrs most days in pool. have very swollen soles. Could that be from running on the spot (always landing on sole not whole foot) Should I wear some kind of aquatic shoe?

  12. Do you know of any flip book available for Aqua Eurobics? I can find diagrams all over but they are too small to read. I am a regular at the YMCA and the Coaches are trying to keep the pace up and I am missing the form and want to be able to work out at home when I can not get to the Y. I have asked the Y for the diagrams but have been met with resistance. I can not use the I Pad or a Video by the pool. Thx

  13. anterior hip replacement & restrictions lifted several months ago; lower back pain w/ sciatica treated & now no pain after 12+wks PT therapy; need exercises & how to do properly esp WATER THERAPY- THANK YOU for wonderful videos.

  14. Do you always recommend wearing the water ankle weights? Do they help stabilize you and keep you from floating? I can't walk in the pool without floating all over the place. Am trying the Ryka water shoes next week.

  15. Hi Dr Jo, your training technic is the one I am looking for.. I don't like hard Excercise, prefer swim. It help a lot. .I will try to learn your VDO .. practise it..probably it may help me to more good health & pretty, also help some of my friend who have join problem. Thank you Jo

  16. Very nice video
    Do you have pool exercises for chondromqlacia that is caused by lateral deviation of patella due to weakness of VMO?

  17. I have never commented on a youtube video before, but I LOVE you! I am a trainer in NYC and love using your vids as referrals to clients when I can't see them. Great explanations and instructional cues. Well done!!

  18. I appreciate the advice on keeping your torso upright and straight, my aqua instructor should emphasize that a bit more, I am pretty flexible. I use to be on the swim team when i was young and water aerobics, water is my second nature to bad i can't turn into a mermaid LOL. thanks for the info and keep trucking doc,, Blessings for your day

  19. THANK YOU so much for these videos. My PT recommended I go to the pool to Water Walking Therapy but I was SOOOOOOOO intimidated because I had no idea as to what to do in the water. These videos gave me something to start with !! I actually made it to the pool for the first time yesterday (been supposed to go since August 2017), your videos were helpful in inspiring me to get there! Thanks Doctor Jo!

  20. Can you tell us a little bit about what problems we might have if we have bad form? I've been doing laps but do lean forwards a lot just trying to get through them faster.

  21. Hey doctor Jo, I'm a 16 yeards old soccer player. 2 weeks ago I taked a hip labral surgury, my doctor said me that I have to do exercises in the swimming pool, what is the best to start with? And you think its possible for me to be squating whith heavy wheigh at 25's of juny? Theanks😊

  22. I hv flat feet…my feet gets swelling if I walk too much or standing position will be more than 20 mins.n feet starts painting a lot even with normal walk..doctor has adviced me to take water walk… As it reduces weight also… Ur advice plz on reducing weight for flat feet people like me suffering from such kind of pain….

  23. My wife needs water therapy for her arthritis all we have right now is a stock tank. That's 23 1/2 inches deep so lets say 20+ inches for the water… would that be deep enough for her until we can get a bigger pool

  24. I can barely walk, when I get on the treadmill I am at 1.5 on flat level 2.30 minutes I'm in so much pain. I want to give water aerobic a try.

  25. I have very low bone density. I need to strengthen my core so I can stand up straighter and keep from falling. What is the progression of exercises you recommend?

  26. I came here to ask about plantar fasciitis too. I also have osteoarthritis quite severely in feet & rest of body. I often have pain when bending toes plus weak ankles. Any suggestions for hydrotherapy exercises?

  27. Hey… I have a degenerative meniscus. Can I do these exercises? Will be starting with the basic walk.

  28. Good evening Dr
    will my leg problem get relif
    can i fold my leg and squat,walk, etc will there be improvement from acqu therapy….

  29. I know these videos are probably targeted at an older crowd, but as someone who is much younger and who has had multiple knee injuries and is coming off a knee surgery where I was told I had limited options to remain active, these videos are amazing and I can't thank you enough for your efforts. You're the best! Also, cannon ball away!

  30. I have had arthritis in my knees for years. I have been doing water aerobics for 4-5 mos now. I have more discomfort in my knees after I finish my routine, why is that?

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