Fundació Fluidra and Sant Joan de Déu spearhead research into the Mental Health Benefits of Aquatic Physical ActivityJune 9, 2021
Over 200 people with mental health problems set to benefit from project to foster therapeutic benefits of aquatic physical activity.
Collaboration agreement between Fundació Fluidra, Fluidra, Obra Social Sant Joan de Déu, and Parc Sanitari Sant Joan de Déu to roll out care and research study into properties of pool-based sports on people with mental disorders over next three years.
Initiative will see Parc Sanitari Sant Joan de Déu patients practice aquatic activities and improve in areas like independence and interpersonal skills.
The project “Sport and Mental Health: The Practice of Pool-Based Sports Activities as a Tool for Social Inclusion” is the outcome of a partnership between Fundació Fluidra, Fluidra, Obra Social Sant Joan de Déu, and the hospital's benchmark centre, the Parc Sanitari Sant Joan de Déu. It also enjoys the support of the Sant Joan de Déu research institute.
The project aims to show that pool-based sports can help improve the quality of life and wellbeing of the general population and especially people living with a severe mental disorder.
To deliver on this goal, 233 people with an intellectual disability or mental health condition cared for at the Parc Sanitari Sant Joan de Déu will engage in activities that Dr Berta García, coordinator of the Adult Mental Health Center and Community Rehabilitation Service for Ciutat Vella said “will help them step out of their comfort zone in a community facility off the health center grounds”. In addition to the physical benefits of pool-based sport, “the project will act as a facilitator to work on the limitations associated with mental disorders and give users more independence, self-esteem, and improved social interactions,” Dr García said.
A pioneering research study will be implemented to ascertain the ways that aquatic physical activity can double down on the benefits of the psychological treatments implemented in the care of this population group.
Health and sports professionals will tap the results for scientific evidence on the properties of pool-based sports practice across several studies that facilitate the evaluation of the impact of water-based activity at the physical, psychological, and social levels.
Water sport tips for the general population
Parallel to this project, and based on the results obtained by the Sant Joan de Déu medical and scientific community, the Fluidra R&D area will prepare a series of tips and guidelines on exercises and routines to practice in the pool, designed to stimulate the physical and emotional wellbeing of the general public. The tips will power healthy physical activity, classified by therapy type, group, and user situation. The exercises can be done individually or led by professionals (especially at sports clubs and hospitality venues).
The initiative will have a budget of €210,000 and Fundació Fluidra will cover the part of the therapeutic activity. The Fluidra R&D area will allocate funds for research, data mining, and the drafting of conclusions.