Recreational Therapists

Health Science > Therapeutic Services

Projected Growth: Faster than average

1100+
Projected Job Openings

Considerable Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Plan, direct, or coordinate medically-approved recreation programs for patients in hospitals, nursing homes, or other institutions. Activities include sports, trips, dramatics, social activities, and arts and crafts. May assess a patient condition and recommend appropriate recreational activity.

Common job titles of Recreational Therapists include:
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Experience and Education

A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for this occupation. For example, a person in this occupation must complete four years of college and work for several years in industry to be considered qualified.

  • 88% said they needed a Bachelor's Degree.

  • 8% said they needed a Master's Degree.

Tasks

    Obtain information from medical records, medical staff, family members and the patients themselves to assess patients' capabilities, needs and interests.

    Counsel and encourage patients to develop leisure activities.

    Develop treatment plan to meet needs of patient, based on needs assessment, patient interests, and objectives of therapy.

    Instruct patient in activities and techniques, such as sports, dance, music, art, or relaxation techniques, designed to meet their specific physical or psychological needs.

    Observe, analyze, and record patients' participation, reactions, and progress during treatment sessions, modifying treatment programs as needed.

    Encourage clients with special needs and circumstances to acquire new skills and get involved in health-promoting leisure activities, such as sports, games, arts and crafts, and gardening.

    Conduct therapy sessions to improve patients' mental and physical well-being.

    Plan, organize, direct, and participate in treatment programs and activities to facilitate patients' rehabilitation, help them integrate into the community, and prevent further medical problems.

    Develop discharge plans for patients.

    Prepare and submit reports and charts to treatment team to reflect patients' reactions and evidence of progress or regression.

    Confer with members of treatment team to plan and evaluate therapy programs.

Tools

Wood carving tools

Water skis

Volleyballs

Therapeutic weight machines

Therapeutic treadmills

Tennis rackets

Softballs

All Tools

Snow skis

Skeet shooting equipment

Shuffleboard equipment

Recreational sailboats

Recreational rowboats

Racing wheelchairs

Pottery wheels

Pool cues

Ping pong paddles

Pianos

Personal computers

Patient hoists

Oil painting brushes

Motorized wheelchairs

Laptop computers

Kayaks

Headpointers

Harmonicas

Handbells

Golf clubs

Free weights

Footballs

Fluidotherapy equipment

Fishing poles

Exercise bicycles

Electronic metronomes

Electronic keyboards

Drum sets

Digital drumsticks

Digital cameras

Digital camcorders

Digital audio recorders

Desktop computers

Croquet sets

Compact disk CD players

Canoes

Bowling balls

Bicycles

Basketballs

Baseballs

Baseball bats

Audio tape recorders

Archery bows

Acoustic guitars

35 millimeter cameras

Technologies

Data entry software

Avid Technology Sibelius

Email software

Hyperscore

MakeMusic Finale

Musical instrument digital interface MIDI software

Patient electronic medical record EMR software

All Technologies

Speech recognition software

Steinberg Cubase Pro

Skills

Service Orientation

Actively looking for ways to help people.

Social Perceptiveness

Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Speaking

Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Coordination

Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Active Listening

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Reading Comprehension

Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Instructing

Teaching others how to do something.

Critical Thinking

Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Writing

Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Complex Problem Solving

Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Active Learning

Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Learning Strategies

Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.

Monitoring

Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Negotiation

Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.

Judgment and Decision Making

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Time Management

Managing one's own time and the time of others.

Persuasion

Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.

Management of Personnel Resources

Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.

Abilities

Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Expression

Tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Problem Sensitivity

Communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Expression

Apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Deductive Reasoning

Combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Inductive Reasoning

Read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Comprehension

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Occupation Sections

Knowledge

Psychology

Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

Therapy and Counseling

Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.

English Language

Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

Education and Training

Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Sociology and Anthropology

Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.

Administration and Management

Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Clerical

Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.

Medicine and Dentistry

Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

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