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Riviera Resident Helps Others Dive into the Healing Power of Water Therapy

Looking for the fountain of youth? Look no further than the pool in your backyard or gym. So says Riviera resident Vince Newman, a physical therapist and certified aquatic therapist who has treated hundreds of cases where water therapy has done what land therapy could not.

“Physical therapy in water allows for earlier initiation of treatment, heals injuries, reduces and often eliminates pain and transforms bodies from handicapped to fully functional and from flabby to fit,” says Vince.  “Land therapy is often too hard on the body for medically compromised patients and others.  I’ve seen time and again how water therapy improves not just the physical but the mental health of patients because they have hope for a full recovery.”

Vince began his profession as a physical therapist specializing in water therapy in the 1970s after a knee injury put an end to his collegiate athletic career. He changed his major from art to medicine with an emphasis in physical therapy after expert guidance helped him quickly recover and return to an athletic lifestyle.

After owning four of his own physical therapy clinics, he was introduced to aquatic therapy and began guiding extremely compromised patients to a full recovery. One patient was a 500-pound man with severe arthritis and heart disease who couldn’t walk upstairs due to excruciating pain. After a few months of aquatic therapy, he lost a significant amount of weight, eliminated his joint pain and was able to climb stairs again. Another patient, a well-known 103-year-old cardiologist, was able to put away his walker and cane after three months of water therapy. Vince even guided Esther Williams, the celebrated swimming champion and actress, with aquatic therapy when she broke three ribs.

“I have seen far more miracles when treating patients in water verses on land, particularly for those who are elderly, overweight or medically compromised,” says Vince. “Nearly everyone over the age of 50 has some arthritis. The transformative powers of aquatic physical therapy let patients find solace, hope and healing within the gentle embrace of water.”

Water’s buoyancy reduces the impact of weight-bearing on joints, ligaments and muscles, allowing individuals to exercise with less pain or discomfort. This can be particularly beneficial for people with arthritis, sports injuries, excess weight or even medical conditions such as Parkinson’s, strokes, head trauma and more.

With its natural resistance to movement, water helps strengthen muscles and stabilize joints with less possibility of strains, sprains or falls. Patients can burn calories without the need for heavy weights or equipment, both of which are demanding on the joints, spine and the rest of the body.  The hydrostatic pressure exerted by water can also aid in improving blood flow and circulation, thereby helping to reduce swelling and promote healing.

“Beyond the physical, water therapy also has profound psychological benefits,” says Vince.   “The calming nature of water can help reduce stress and anxiety during therapy sessions. If a patient is committed to their recovery, aquatic therapy can help them get their lives back.” 

Though he sold his practice, Vince still does water therapy at private pools for clients.  He can be reached at: 310-980-9379 or vincenewman@yahoo.com. You can see client testimonials and a video of Vince’s aquatic therapy by typing in “Introduction to Water Physical Therapy Specialists” on YouTube.