Recreational Therapy

Recreational Therapy

Recreation Treatment

During Recreational Therapy the treatment plan addresses the patient's dysfunction by allowing them to participate in an activity that has been individually designed for them. The diagnosis may be a condition pertaining to their mental, emotional and physical state. Through these recreational activities the therapist promotes well being by helping improve the client's motor functioning and goal setting skills. Recreational treatment helps to build confidence in the patient and promote social interaction with others. Some of the sessions consist of arts, music or group outings. Patients will be evaluated depending on the assessment results and observations made by the therapist. During treatment patients go through various relaxation techniques while the counselor observes the way that they are reacting to the activities.

Goals of Recreational Therapy

The main focus of Recreational Therapy is participation. The leisure activities that the client takes part in helps them develop and create a balanced lifestyle within a clinical setting. When the client is willing to create goals throughout treatment it takes them away from a restrictive environment and gives them time to focus on something enjoyable. The therapists look at each of the patients throughout therapy and create individual plans which address every area of their condition. After they've diagnosed the patient the counselor creates goals that track the patient's progress. During the activities patients are encouraged to join in and find therapeutic healing by expressing themselves and working with others. Recreational Therapy also focuses on how the patient dwells within a social setting.

When is Recreational Therapy Used?

This form of therapy is used for patients who suffer from any mental health condition, geriatric condition, addictions, development issues and pediatric issues. It is open to many being that the activities are created for those who are in need of developmental, social and behavioral progress. The majority of the therapists who perform the sessions work at health care agencies and traditional medical settings. More facilities have a desire for recreational therapists because of how beneficial they are in addressing certain aspects of the patients health needs.

How Recreational Therapy Works

The treatment works by embracing the health of clients who are suffering from a given illness. It helps to improve their physical, mental, emotional and social wellbeing. The clients stay active through recreational activities which are a way for them to create goals and work independently. Treatment is conducted differently than other sessions because the modalities that are implemented through intervention strategies. The counselor focuses on rehabilitation for the group or individual while also helping the patients set their own goals.

Recreational therapists make sure that the client's interests are included during the session which ensures that it is much more customized to them and their condition. They are more likely to take interest in the activity and complete it when it is relevant to hobbies they actually enjoy. Therapists work with the patients in an individualized manner by taking their condition, history, hobbies and desires into account. The way that the counselor studies the treatment is unique being that it incorporates social, physical and cognitive health. By staying active the patient will benefit from healthy living and improved motor functioning. This provides them with a sense of independence away from all other health related or personal responsibilities in a medical facility. The Recreational Therapists will deliver treatment services and activities using specialized methods for each patient. During treatment the clients actively participate in arts, music, drama, dancing or crafts. They are often introduced to breathing techniques which will assist their reactions during stress, anxiety or depression.

The therapists work alongside doctors and social workers when setting up the treatment. Looking at the patient's medical records and speaking with family members often takes place before the sessions have begun. Throughout the counselor keeps track of how the patient is progressing while also creating a detailed report. Treatment helps patients become interested in enhancing their skills and participating in new leisure activities. The counselor will speak with the patients about their treatments with the other health care physicians. The client is instructed to actively participate in hobbies that are designed to satisfy their own condition and personal goals. The sessions are held specifically to improve the client's physical state and mental well-being. Individual reports are prepared after the sessions have been conducted which concludes how the client was progressing during the activities. The most important element to track is whether or not the patient was actively enjoying and completing hobbies aimed towards personal development and achievement.


Recreation therapy. (n.d.). Retrieved from

The role of the recreation therapist and the recreation therapy program. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Help Us Improve This Article

Did you find an inaccuracy? We work hard to provide accurate and scientifically reliable information. If you have found an error of any kind, please let us know by sending an email to, please reference the article title and the issue you found.

Share Therapedia With Others