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2340 – Functional Core Stabilization for Balance and Gait

Intermediate / Pool Workshop

Morgantown, WV / Sunday, August 23, 2020 – 12:00-3:30 pm – 3.5 credit hours

(Indoor Pool: 12:00-1:45 pm / Classroom: 1:45-3:30 pm)

Faculty: Mary Wykle, PhD, ATRIC


Functional Core Stabilization for Balance and Gait is the backbone program for all progressions and multiple diagnoses in aquatic therapy and rehabilitation. Key strategies addressing balance looks at core strength and physical condition as the foundation of all movement and balance. Core stabilization is essential for confronting the principles and properties of water that permit positive outcomes and is essential for balance. Only then can gait be addressed. This course takes into consideration physical conditioning, diagnoses that effect balance and gait, and establishes goals that assist in the transfer to land. Functional balance challenges include core stabilization with recovery from perturbations and water turbulence, shifts out of center of balance with return to stability, strength training for the core, lower extremities, upper extremities, resistive and isometric exercises, and dynamic balance moves with head movements. Functional core and balance training should include protocols that require the body to respond to varied perturbations and exercises to re-enforce the control movement of the head, body and extremities, triggering a reaction to stabilize. Exercises should be executed in all planes of motion, keeping in mind the sensory processes that feed the body information.


1)    Understand varied ways to achieve core stabilization.

2)    Recognize achieving balance confidence as essential to all activity.

3)    Consider the components of gait and the differences between water and land.

4)    Practice core stabilization in the pool and protocols to progress to balance and gait.

FACULTYMary Wykle, PhD, ATRIC, presents for ATRI and AEA. Course development includes aquatic re-conditioning programs for the Army and USMC. Additional programs include Aqua Pi-Yo-Chi™, Core Stabilization and Safety Training. Aquatic recognitions include: AEA Global Award for Lifetime Achievement (2010); ISHOF Adapted Aquatics Award (2007); ATRI Aquatic Professional of the Year (2006); ATRI Tsunami Spirit Award (2004) and ATRI Dolphin Award (2002).