In this episode, we discuss strategies for transitioning clients into aquatic occupational therapy sessions, particularly with pediatric populations. We highlight the challenges that come with working with children, including their uncertainty, anxiety levels, and varying comfort and skill levels with the pool.
To address these challenges, we share several helpful tips and recommendations. We discuss how we filmed a video of our journey to the facility, parking, and walking to the pool, to provide both the parents and clients with a familiarization of the process. We also recommend asking screening questions related to clients' comfort level and skill level in the pool, to prepare the therapist with the necessary materials and assistance. Additionally, we highlight the importance of setting up materials for each client to ensure quick and smooth transitions, and anticipating potential issues or barriers to participation beforehand.
We also discuss practical recommendations for parents, such as dressing their child with a bathing suit underneath their street clothes, and knowing the location of restrooms and locker rooms to minimize the time needed for preparation. We also suggest presenting low social demands, such as quick compliments or small talk, to put the clients at ease before inviting them to participate in the pool.
Overall, we hope these strategies will help therapists and parents ease the transition into aquatic occupational therapy sessions for children and increase safety and participation. Tune in for more insights and tips on this topic.