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What Is Therapeutic Recreation?

Therapeutic recreation activities help children and teens who have disabilities get involved in recreational and leisure activities. The goal of therapeutic recreation programs is to help all people—regardless of physical abilities and limitations—enjoy an active lifestyle.


How Therapeutic Recreation Can Help

A recreational therapist can work with you or your child to:

  • Assess their capabilities and strengths.
  • Find programs for healthy leisure activities.
  • Help them learn about casual or competitive sports adapted for people who have disabilities.
  • Plan ways to include more activity in daily life.
  • Practice cognitive (thinking and learning), fine motor and physical skills during one-on-one treatment sessions to gain skills that can affect participation in leisure activities.
  • Access opportunities and equipment for adapted sports and leisure, such as adapted bikes or wheelchair athletics.
  • Provide community integration session to practice skills learned in the hospital and apply them to community settings.

The recreational therapists at Gillette Children’s have extensive experience working with people who have disabilities and complex conditions.