What is a Recreational Therapist?
A Recreational Therapist is someone trained in using recreation and leisure as tools to improve a person’s level of functioning and quality of life in all 5 domains of human existence (physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual).
Where do Recreational Therapists work?
Recreational Therapists work in a variety of clinical and community-based settings which can include:
- Behavioral Health Hospitals
- Physical Rehab Hospitals
- Community Parks and Recreation Departments
- Long Term Care Facilities (Skilled Nursing, Assisted Living, and Independent Care)
- Correctional Facilities
- Military Bases
- Adaptive Sports Camps/Facilities
- Outdoor Camps
- In-Home Health
What makes Recreational Therapy effective?
Recreational Therapists incorporate a person’s leisure and/or recreational interests into an active treatment plan for their clients. They do not provide activities strictly for enjoyment purposes, but rather use specifically chosen activities to help improve a client’s physical and cognitive functioning, teach coping skills to deal with behaviors, build a sense of purpose and esteem in client’s life, and aid them in reaching their unique goals.
What kind of degree do you need to be a Recreational Therapist?
Recreational Therapists require a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree to enter the field, however advanced degrees are available. Degree titles can include Therapeutic Recreation, Recreational Therapy, Recreation Therapy, or have an emphasis in any of those areas. (Ie: Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Administration with an Emphasis In Therapeutic Recreation)
How much money does a Recreational Therapist make in a year?
According to the Bureau Of Labor Statistics, the average annual salary in the United States for a Recreational Therapist is $48,220.
Where can I find a Recreational Therapy Job or Internship?
Where can I go to school to become a Recreational Therapist?
Over 80 different universities throughout the United States Of America (and some in Canada) have Recrecreational Therapy degree programs where a student can get their Bachelor’s degrees. Some of these schools also provide Master’s degree and PhD programs in Recreational Therapy.
To see a list of universities offering Recreational Therapy degree programs to find one near you, visit our Universities List page.
What are the requirements to becoming a Recreational Therapist?
Recreational Therapists must possess at minimum a degree in Recreational Therapy (or Therapeutic Recreation), complete a 560-hour internship, and pass a comprehensive exam to become a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) through the National Council For Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC). If you live in a state with a licensure requirement, then you will need to get your license through the state licensure board as well.
Looking for a Recreational Therapist job or internship? Wanting to hire a Recreational Therapist or intern?
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