Worldwide Aquatic Bodywork Association Code of Ethics
To touch someone is a privilege. We who seek to touch others as a profession are called to grow into this privilege through study, practice and ongoing growth in self-awareness. These guidelines for ethical practice set the standards to which we can grow and develop as WABA professionals.
This Code of Ethics serves to guide students, practitioners and instructors to create relationships that honor the responsibility and privilege of touching another. Bodywork, and aquatic bodywork in particular, can take us and those we touch into areas of nurturing, intimacy and nonordinary states of consciousness that many have not experienced before. We may encounter feelings for connection, love and spiritual awakening that ask to be met with compassion and non-judgment. This Code serves to point us in the direction of responsibility and set the intention of the work we do.
A WABA Professional will:
• Conduct their professional activities with integrity, honesty, respect and compassion.
• Demonstrate a sincere commitment to provide the highest quality professional service, including a safe, healthy and appropriate environment. This includes respecting the client’s/students’s beliefs, privacy, emotional expression and reasonable expectations of professional behavior.
• Accurately provide information to clients/students and the public on the scope and limitations of their disciplines, and represent their qualifications honestly, including educational achievements and professional affiliations.
• Provide only those professional services they are authorized and qualified to perform.
• Recognize the limitations and contraindications of their particular form of professional bodywork, and refer clients appropriately to other health professionals.
• Respect the rights of clients, students and other health professionals without discrimination.
• Safeguard the confidentiality of all clients/students information.
• Respect the client’s/students right to autonomy and informed consent, including the right to refuse, modify or terminate professional treatment regardless of prior consent.
• Refrain, under all circumstances from initiating or engaging in any sexual behavior or activity in a professional session or training, even if the client/student attempts to sexualize the relationship.
• Maintain and improve professional knowledge, competence, and excellence through continuing education and training.
• Do not practice under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or any illegal substances (with the exceptions of the prescribed dosage of prescription medication which does not significantly impair the practitioner).
• Have the right to refuse and/or terminate the service to a client/ student who is abusive or under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or any illegal substance.
• Acknowledge the client’s/student’s right to choose their apparel for a session/class such that their safety, comfort and privacy is respected, within the requirements of the facility and practitioner’s comfort.
• The client/student needs are primary
• The Practitioner/instructor is not to have his/her physical or emotional needs met in any way by the client or student.
• With just and reasonable cause, the client/student can execute the right to refuse treatment to anyone or any part of the body.
• Refuse gifts or compensation from any client/student that may promote any treatment or activity that is not in the client’s/student’s best interest.
• Have awareness of the balance of power that exists between a professional practitioner/instructor and a client or student
• Avoid entering into significant dual relationships, including sexual, with clients or students for a reasonable amount of time (at least 30-60 days) after terminating the professional relationship. “Significant” is defined as any other relationship in which the personal motives, desires and longings of the practitioner/instructor can interfere with or exploit the therapeutic/educational relationship. When a second relationship is considered, practitioner/instructors areadvised to seek supervision from someone skilled in helping them
determine if they can:
a. determine the balance of power that exists between them and avoid entering into a personal or business relationship where there is a significant imbalance between them in areas of money, power, sex, emotional or spiritual maturity and development;
b. achieve clarity of intention and motivation for the new relationship and whether the WABA professional is exploiting the therapeutic relationship for personal gain;
c. assess their ability and that of the client to maintain confidentiality about what happens in the therapeutic sessions while engaged in a second relationship.
• Follow all policies, procedures, guidelines, regulations, codes, ethics and requirements promulgated by the WABA Board of Directors.
I understand that my signature below states that I have read this Code of Ethics, understand each policy, and agree to comply. Failure to comply may result in WABA sanctions, including loss of certification.