When Grant Fedoruk, owner of Leading Edge Physiotherapy headquartered in Edmonton, Alberta, had the idea of incorporating aquatic therapy into his small clinic, he hopped on a plane to Boston to visit a few facilities. No such facilities existed in Western Canada. Now, in 2021, almost 10 years later, after installing the SwimEx 600 T in his St. Albert facility, he’s looking to add two more pools to his expanding practice.
We had a chance to connect with Grant and learn more about his growing practice, his commitment to professional development, and his passion for the clients he serves.
Better than being on land
Leading Edge Physiotherapy primarily uses the pool to treat musculoskeletal injuries and support surgical rehab, helping a variety of clients including those who have undergone hip and knee replacement surgery or spinal surgery. “We are also using the pool for neurology patients and even pediatrics, helping kids with everything from ADD, to autism, to cerebral palsy,” said Grant. “In the pool, we can get people moving when it’s usually too painful or difficult to move on land, and clients love that type of independence.” Grant added, “With the SwimEx 600 T model, we’re using the platform heights all of the time and the angled plyo-pads for lateral movements. We also added the jetted massage wand, which is a bit of a reward for clients at the end of their session.”
“I spent time with an orthopedic surgeon who was doing a lot of hip and knee surgeries, and I knew with the right protocols, we could improve client outcomes with an integrated approach – combining aquatic therapy with land-based physical therapy,” notes Grant. “Being in the SwimEx pool with the current, it’s better than being on land. Whether you are working with it, or against it, the ability to vary the current with the therapeutic exercise is invaluable.”
With a large client base and the 1-1 therapy they provide, the pool is in constant use. They have had to open seven days a week to meet demand. “The only time the pool is down is when we drain and clean the pool. Maintenance has been easy. The water gets tested daily, and we’ve had no problems with bacteria,” said Grant.
Putting patients first
And while the pool has been a good return on their investment financially, Grant notes that the intrinsic value is much more than any monetary value. “Above all things, we put our patients first, doing everything we can for them. It has led to a tremendous amount of trust; our clients know everything we are doing for them is for the right reason” said Grant. “And they know how unique an opportunity it is for them to be able to access this high-level technology.”
Leading Edge, as the name implies, has always been a leader in the field, with Grant and his team using the latest technology that can help manage the pain and injuries of his clients. Leading Edge was one of the earliest practices to invest in training in Gunn IMS, Intramuscular Stimulation, for their patients. They also have Alter-G treadmills, Normatech, Summus Laser, K-Laser, and one of the first CryoPenguins in western Canada. Professional development is also critical, with an internal mentoring and internship program for their growing group of professionals.
Only limited by their imagination
The pool opens up opportunities for clients to do things they might not be able to do on land. “I see so many success stories. For example, a lower back patient who can hardly move on dry land, gets into the pool and starts doing squats and step lunges. The movement that the buoyancy and comfort provide in the aquatic environment, it’s just great,” explained Fedoruk. “Even the simple act of using a noodle in the pool helps clients – they are taking the weight off their body, moving their knees up and down, expanding their range of motion,” said Grant. “We offer a wide range of aquatic therapy treatments, from helping pediatrics clients who love the stimulation of the pool to using the pool current for internal and external shoulder rotation for post-surgical patients,” Grant added.“I tell my clients that their only limit is their imagination.”
Leading Edge client Dan shared his experience with using the pool following a snowmobile accident that fractured his tibia and fibula. “I was very surprised how much the pool helps with the stretching of the muscles and how the currents in the water can work different muscles,” Dan explained. “Prior to using the pool, I could not walk up or down stairs normally. I had to take things one step at a time. After about 3 pool sessions I was able to walk up and down stairs normally again. Without the pool, I would not be where I am today,” said Dan.
Also, see our guidance for designing a professional hydrotherapy room.