Hydrotherapy: Application of an Aquatic Functional Assessment Scale (AFAS) in Aquatic Motor Skills Learning
Vera Lúcia Israel, Maria Benedita Lima Pardo

Objective: To describe the application of an aquatic functional assessment scale in aquatic functional motor skills learning, through hydrotherapy in a heated pool, to classify adaptation and independence of the participants in the water.
Methods: Application of a hydrotherapy program to assess behavioral objectives, evaluation criteria which were defined as learning levels, ranked from 1 (0%) to 5 (100%) with Aquatic Functional Assessment Scale (AFAS) predicting, since no execution of motor skills, full or partial support or help to execution of motor behavior aquatic independence. The practice was conducted in a heated pool (33 to 34 ºC) in Brazil, with six participants with spinal cord injuries (three paraplegics and three tetraplegics). The program in hydrotherapy occurred in 15 intervention sessions, 30 minutes each, four times a week.
Results: Participants had average level of learning above 80.0% (level 4) in 20 of the 26 motor behaviors assessed aquatic. The paraplegic group's results were 80.0% during phases "adaptation(A)", "mastering of the liquid medium (D)" and "global fitness (Cd)". The tetraplegic group's results were above 90.0% during "D" and "Cd".
Conclusion: The planning of new strategies in the hydrotherapy in a heated pool using an aquatic functional assessment scale contributed to the development of aquatic motor behaviors.

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