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Health Professionals
Recreation Therapists



Recreation Therapists
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   12.46

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    assistive, behavioral, interdisciplinary, intervention, mediation, outpatient, rehabilitate, remediate, well-being, creativity, clinical, internship, emotional, therapy, abuse, emphasis
     content words:    Therapeutic Recreation, National Council, Therapeutic Recreation Certification


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     Spanish: Terapeuta recreativo


Recreation Therapists
By Jennifer Kenny
  

1     Doesn't the job of recreation therapist sound like fun? While its title sounds quite enjoyable, it is actually a health career. A recreation therapist provides treatment to sick and disabled individuals. The tasks of a recreation therapist are meant to reduce the effects of illnesses and disabilities. Basically, a recreation therapist tries to improve a person's health and well-being through recreational tasks. This job should not be confused with a recreation worker who organizes activities mainly for enjoyment.
 
2     Recreation therapists are part of an interdisciplinary team. They need to discover the needs, abilities, and limitations of their patients. They work with doctors, nurses, psychologists, social workers, and other therapists. They also take cues from family members. They may be found in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, adult day care facilities, outpatient programs, mental health centers, and alcohol/drug abuse locations.
 
3     To work in a clinical setting, people need a bachelor's degree in Therapeutic Recreation. In some cases, they may have their bachelor's degree in Recreation with an emphasis in Therapeutic Recreation. Courses would include recreation and leisure theory, behavioral science, physical science, and biology. An internship would also be included. Recreation therapists need to understand program planning, intervention design, evaluation, assistive devices, and human anatomy. The National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification does offer national certification in this field. Special certificates are offered in aquatic therapy, mediation, and crisis intervention as well.

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