When and how did Fluid Motion begin?

In 2014, Ben Wilkins, a Registered Osteopath, together with Physiotherapy students Alun Bonello, Hilary Smith and Medical student Annie Archer came up with the idea for Fluid Motion after discussing their frustrations with the barriers of the current healthcare system.

Specialist hydrotherapy pools are a limited resource. The pools are relatively shallow (often up to 1.5 metres deep) and the water temperature is kept at a pleasant 30-35 degrees Celsius. However, private sessions in these pools are expensive and NHS waiting lists can be long. 

Through their combined expertise, the friends decided to tackle this problem by designing a aquatic rehabilitation programme that can be tailored to individual needs, and be delivered at local swimming pools for small to medium size groups. A pilot programme of six sessions was held in Barton at the beginning of 2015. From April 2015 a regular slot is held at Brookes Sport Botley, Oxford Brookes Harcout Hill campus, and a second session was added at both pools in 2016. The longer term aim is to roll out Fluid Motion to all pools in Oxfordshire and eventually nationwide. 

​How has Fluid Motion progressed? 

We’re working to make Fluid Motion into an organisation that provides support and treatment for Musculoskeletal Health Conditions alongside the NHS in the same way McMillan support patients with Cancer and Mind supports patients with Mental Health Conditions. On top of that, with the funds we’ve been granted we have designed and created a Fluid Motion App/Software to incorporate health technology into Community Health Care. From Spring this year, we have been able to track and reflect on participants progress in real-time so we can utilise the data to improve clinical decision making in rehabilitative health care so that patients get better sooner and prevent pain and disability for longer. 

Sessions for up to 16 participants at Barton and Botley pools are led by instructors Martina, Vanessa and Bianca. They are supported by Hannah and other volunteers. Annie is acting medical sciences advisor for the team.

About Fluid Motion

Fluid Motion is a water-based rehabilitation programme designed to be fun and beneficial for people with a range of health issues. Water-based rehabilitation can also be called aquatic therapy or hydrotherapy.


Aquatic strengthening and conditioning exercises are tailored to participants needs following an initial poolside assessment. The information you provide will be used to assess your condition and plan your tailored programme. Sessions last about an hour and are led by qualified practitioners.

Hydrotherapy as a healthcare intervention for a range of musculoskeletal conditions is highly regarded. Fluid Motion's mission is to introduce affordable, easy to access physiotherapy sessions in local pools.


Fluid Motion Community Health Company CIC is a registered Community Interest Compancy (CIC) - company registration number 9606159.