Rapidswim Aquatic Therapy

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Water Awareness for People Living with Disability

Teaching a person with Autism, or other disability, to swim is a possibility with Rapidswim – It’s also vital in ensuring water safety with summer on the horizon. With water based activity being a favourite Australian pastime each summer, Inclusive Sport SA, through their ‘Rapidswim’ program, values everyone’s right to enjoy the water in a safe and supported environment. Rapidswim is a fun aquatic therapy program designed to introduce children to water whilst providing an environment for relaxation, development of coordination, communication and social integration. While Rapidswim supports people of all ages living with disability, children with Autism are the largest demographic to benefit from the program. Rapidswim Occupational Therapist Anne Sunners explains, “Children with Autism may have difficulty tolerating the feeling of water on their body and this can impact on daily life. Safety can be an issue for some children because of reduced awareness of their own body and of water safety. Leading into summer this is a serious concern around pools and at the beach.” Logan, 5, of Morphett Vale was terrified of the water, simple activity such as bath time was a nightmare says mum, Kate. “Bath times were horrendous as we struggled to even get him to stand in the bath and showers were totally out of the question. Now however, it’s a complete different story! We can’t get him out of the bath! He sits and plays and splashes. We owe this to the brilliant Rapidswim Aquatic Therapy Program. Seeing my son so happy in the water, is something I thought I would never see.” Parents have the opportunity to enrol in the Rapidswim Aquatic Therapy program with sessions available throughout various indoor swimming centres across Adelaide. Options are available both during daytime and outside of school hours. The program operates during school with weekly 30-45 min sessions – Next available daytime sessions commence October 13, in time for summer. Rapidswim Aquatic Therapy can be included in NDIS planning. For further information about Rapidswim and the Rapidswim Aquatic Therapy program, visit inclusivesportsa.com.au/swimming.