Dr. Dugan shares why women should exercise in the pool.
I frequently prescribe exercise in the water to patients or colleagues of mine. The water has a lot of great opportunities. There is buoyancy so if you have a muscle group that’s weak or a painful joint, the water will actually assist you in doing a motion, and in fact in the pelvic floor, the water itself will assist you with maintaining, what's called the intra-abdominal pressure. So the pelvic floor, if you think of a balloon, the pelvic floor is the bottom of that balloon, and when you’re in the water, the balloon will float easier.
You can also use the water to increase resistance. So either put a floatation device on your arm and push it down into the water at a fast rate, and that would be a strengthening exercise. So the pool is a great place to exercise.
About Dr. Dugan, M.D.:
Dr. Sheila A. Dugan, M.D., is Assistant Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the Rush Medical College, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois. She is a faculty member of the Department of Neurosurgery and the Department of Preventive Medicine. She is co-medical director of the Rush Program for Abdominal and Pelvic Health.
Dr. Dugan is multi board-certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation, electrodiagnostic medicine and pain medicine. She is highly skilled in neurological and sports-related rehabilitation. Prior to medical school, she received her physical therapy degree from Northwestern University in 1986. She's currently pursuing development of a program focused on women's musculoskeletal care, including both their medical and rehabilitation needs.