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Career and Education Opportunities for Recreational Therapists

In general, recreational therapists plan, direct, or coordinate medically-approved recreation programs for patients in hospitals, nursing homes, or other institutions. They also activities include sports, trips, and arts and crafts.

Select a state from the map below to find education opportunities to begin your Recreational Therapist career.


Highlighted states contain educational opportunities in Athletic and Occupational

JOB DESCRIPTION: Recreational Therapist

Recreational Therapist video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

Recreational therapists conduct therapy sessions to further optimize patients' mental and physical well-being. They also talk with members of treatment teams to develop and evaluate therapy programs. Equally important, recreational therapists have to instruct patients in efforts and techniques. They are often called upon to counsel and encourage patients to evolve leisure efforts. They are expected to obtain data from medical records, medical staff, family members and the patients themselves to gauge patients' capabilities, needs and interests. Finally, recreational therapists encourage clients with special needs and circumstances to acquire new skills and get involved in health-promoting leisure efforts, such as sports, games, arts and crafts, and gardening.

Every day, recreational therapists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.