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Recreational Therapy

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Students who complete the Recreational Therapy emphasis area at Georgia Southern University are qualified to become nationally certified as Recreational Therapists and serve the rehabilitation and recreation needs of individuals in a variety of settings. Recreational Therapy students participate in many experiential opportunities where they observe practitioners in clinical, medical, and community settings as well as participate in disability simulations to gain a greater understanding of the clients they will work with. As a part of their coursework in the RT program, students will complete 200 hours of first-hand experience in RT settings and their academic work will culminate with a 480-hour internship in the RT setting of their choice.

What is Recreational Therapy

Recreational Therapists provide recreation and activity interventions to clients who desire to improve their health and quality of life. Recreational Therapy (RT) is the purposeful use of recreation and activity interventions to improve clients’ functioning in six domains:

  • cognitive;
  • emotional;
  • physical;
  • social;
  • spiritual; and
  • leisure.


What do recreational therapists do?
  • Conduct formal client assessments
  • Plan purposeful interventions based on assessment results
  • Adventure therapy
  • Anger management techniques
  • Aquatic therapy
  • Expressive arts
  • Leisure education
  • Stress management techniques
  • Therapeutic horseback riding
  • Therapeutic Reminiscence
  • Animal assisted therapy
  • Therapeutic use of exercise and play
  • Values clarification
  • Implement selected interventions for groups and/or individuals
  • Evaluate intervention effectiveness
  • Document client responses to treatment

    Where do recreational therapists work?
  • hospitals
  • institutions
  • nursing homes
  • rehabilitation centers
  • residential centers
  • schools
  • correctional facilities
  • camps
  • mental health centers
  • parks and recreation departments

    Who do recreational therapists work with
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Spina bifida
  • Autism
  • Mental health
  • Mental retardation
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Amputations
  • Cerebral vascular accidents
  • Adolescents with emotional and behavioral disorders
  • Elderly
  • Last updated: 11/17/2017