What is Recreation Therapy?

Until today there is a good chance you have never heard of recreation therapy. Usually the first time anyone meets a recreation therapist is when they need rehabilitative or long term care services. Thanks to www.myrecreationtherapist.com   the opportunity to receive recreation therapy services is now available to anyone.

According to the American Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA), Recreational Therapy or Therapeutic Recreation (TR) is a treatment service designed to restore, remediate and rehabilitate a person’s level of functioning and independence in life activities, to promote health and wellness as well as reduce or eliminate the activity limitations and restrictions to participation in life situations caused by an illness or disabling condition. 

HealthPro.net defines recreation therapy as a therapy that embraces a definition of “health” which includes not only the absence of “illness”, but extends to enhancement of physical, cognitive, emotional, social and leisure development so the individual may participate fully and independently in chosen life pursuits. The unique feature of recreational therapy that makes it different from other therapies is the use of recreational modalities in the designed intervention strategies. Although many of the treatment goals that a recreational therapist may work towards are similar to other disciplines on the rehabilitation team, the way a recreational therapist achieves those goals is what distinguishes this unique service. Incorporating client’s interests, family and/or community makes the therapy process meaningful and relevant. Recreational therapy is very individualized to each person’s past, present and future interests and lifestyle. The recreational therapist has a unique perspective regarding the social, cognitive, physical, emotional, mental and leisure needs of the individual. Recreational therapists weave the concept of healthy living into treatment to ensure not only improved functioning, but also to enhance independence and successful involvement in all aspects of life. http://www.healthpronet.org

Recreational therapy is listed as a rehabilitation therapy service in the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) standards. In addition, recreational therapists are designated as treatment team members in the acute brain injury, the post-acute brain injury, and the inpatient rehabilitation standards of the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) includes recreational therapy in the mix of treatment and rehabilitation services used to determine federal compliance in skilled nursing, rehabilitation (physical and psychiatric) and long-term care facilities. Recreation Therapy is specifically indicated as a Related Service under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. A few states regulate this profession through licensure, certification, registration or regulation of titles. The National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC) provides national certification of recreational therapists.

What is a Recreation Therapist?

The Recreational Therapist has been the cornerstones of many rehabilitative and habilitative programs throughout the world for over 35 years.  These facilities include but are certainly not limited to physical rehabilitation, mental health services, chemical dependency, elder care facilities, programs for the intellectually challenged, home health as well as the educational system.  

According to the American Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA) www.atra-online.com , Recreational Therapists work with clients to restore motor, social and cognitive functioning, build confidence, develop coping skills, and integrate skills learned in treatment settings into community settings. Intervention areas vary widely and are based upon client interests.

Who is My Recreation Therapist?

The recreation therapist that you will find registered on www.MyRecreationTherapist.com  have graduated from an accredited College or University with either a Bachelors,  Masters or Doctoral degree in Recreation and Leisure Studies with a specialization in Therapeutic Recreation. Our therapist must maintain credentials as either a Licensed Recreation Therapist (LRT) or a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) and have met or exceeded the requirements and standards established by the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC).  www.NCTRC.org.

What will Private Recreation Therapy look like?

Typically once you have selected your personal Recreation Therapist he/she will conduct a complete and comprehensive assessment that will include the consumer, family members, care givers, medical team, rehabilitative team and any other person associated with the care and wellbeing of the individual. The assessment will determine the individuals past, present and future recreational and leisure interests. The therapist will then develop a comprehensive care plan to address the physical, mental, emotional, and social needs of the individual. Together with the consumers the recreation therapist will develop a plan of care with individualized goals, objectives and interventions with expected outcomes. If indicated, the Recreation Therapist will also provide collaboration with the treatment team and provide progress reports on a regular basis to all individuals involved in the care of the consumer.

Once a plan of care is established then the fun begins. The Recreation Therapist, consumer, family and care givers will implement the plan. Since these plans are individualized to meet the specific and unique needs of the consumer, it will be determined on an individual basis as to how often you will need your Recreation Therapist.  Some consumers will utilize their Recreation Therapist as a long term care giver employing them on a full time basis where others will find that they only need their Recreation Therapist on a part time basis.  The hours of service and rate of pay will be determined and agreed upon by the consumer and individual therapist. 

Who are our consumers?

Our consumers are anyone that is experiencing physical, mental, emotional, and social barriers and challenges that are inhibiting them from enjoying life and an active recreation and leisure lifestyle.  Our consumers want more out of life than just maintaining their basic needs.