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Recreational Therapists
SOC Code: 29-1125.00

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.

Sample of reported job titles: Activities Director, Activity Assistant, Activity Coordinator, Activity Director, Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS), General Activities Therapist, Recreation Therapist, Recreational Therapist, Rehabilitation Therapist, Therapeutic Recreation Specialist

Tasks

  • Obtain information from medical records, medical staff, family members and the patients themselves to assess patients' capabilities, needs and interests.
  • 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.
  • Observe, analyze, and record patients' participation, reactions, and progress during treatment sessions, modifying treatment programs as needed.
  • Confer with members of treatment team to plan and evaluate therapy programs.
  • Instruct patient in activities and techniques, such as sports, dance, music, art, or relaxation techniques, designed to meet their specific physical or psychological needs.
  • Develop treatment plan to meet needs of patient, based on needs assessment, patient interests, and objectives of therapy.
  • 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.
  • Prepare and submit reports and charts to treatment team to reflect patients' reactions and evidence of progress or regression.
  • Counsel and encourage patients to develop leisure activities.
  • Develop discharge plans for patients.

Technology Skills

  • Data base user interface and query software - Data entry software
  • Electronic mail software - Email software
  • Internet browser software - Web browser software
  • Medical software - Patient electronic medical record EMR software
  • Music or sound editing software - Avid Technology Sibelius; Hyperscore; MakeMusic Finale; Steinberg Cubase Pro (see all 5 examples)
  • Office suite software - Microsoft Office
  • Presentation software - Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Spreadsheet software - Microsoft Excel
  • Voice recognition software - Speech recognition software
  • Word processing software - Microsoft Word

Tools Used

  • Archery bows
  • Baseball bats
  • Baseballs
  • Basketballs
  • Bells - Handbells
  • Bicycles
  • Bowling equipment - Bowling balls
  • Canoes or kayaks - Canoes; Kayaks
  • Carving tools - Wood carving tools
  • Cassette players or recorders - Audio tape recorders
  • Compact disk players or recorders - Compact disk CD players
  • Croquet sets
  • Desktop computers
  • Digital camcorders or video cameras - Digital camcorders
  • Digital cameras
  • Digital voice recorders - Digital audio recorders
  • Drums - Drum sets
  • Extremity hydrotherapy baths or tanks - Fluidotherapy equipment
  • Fishing rods - Fishing poles
  • Footballs
  • Golf clubs
  • Guitars - Acoustic guitars
  • Harmonicas
  • Headpointers or mouthsticks for the physically challenged - Headpointers
  • Metronomes - Electronic metronomes
  • Notebook computers - Laptop computers
  • Patient lifts or accessories - Patient hoists
  • Pedal exercisers for rehabilitation or therapy - Exercise bicycles
  • Percussion instrument accessory - Digital drumsticks
  • Personal computers
  • Pianos - Electronic keyboards
  • Pool cues
  • Potters wheels for hand made ceramics - Pottery wheels
  • Recreational rowboats
  • Recreational sailboats
  • Shuffleboard - Shuffleboard equipment
  • Skis - Snow skis
  • Softballs
  • Specialty brushes - Oil painting brushes
  • Still cameras - 35 millimeter cameras
  • Table tennis paddles - Ping pong paddles
  • Tennis racquets - Tennis rackets
  • Trapshooting equipment - Skeet shooting equipment
  • Treadmill exercisers for rehabilitation or therapy - Therapeutic treadmills
  • Volleyballs
  • Water skis or accessories - Water skis
  • Weight machines for rehabilitation or therapy - Therapeutic weight machines
  • Weights or sets or accessories for rehabilitation or therapy - Free weights
  • Wheelchairs - Motorized wheelchairs; Racing wheelchairs

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.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • 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.

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.
  • 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.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • 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.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • 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.
  • 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

  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Originality - The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
  • Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Flexibility of Closure - The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
  • Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
  • Time Sharing - The ability to shift back and forth between two or more activities or sources of information (such as speech, sounds, touch, or other sources).

Interests

  • Interest code: SA
    • Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
    • Artistic - Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

Work Context

  • Face-to-Face Discussions - 100% responded “Every day.”
  • Electronic Mail - 96% responded “Every day.”
  • Contact With Others - 77% responded “Constant contact with others.”
  • Work With Work Group or Team - 73% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work - 64% responded “A lot of freedom.”
  • Telephone - 58% responded “Every day.”
  • Freedom to Make Decisions - 46% responded “A lot of freedom.”
  • Physical Proximity - 54% responded “Very close (near touching).”
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled - 69% responded “Every day.”
  • Coordinate or Lead Others - 46% responded “Very important.”
  • Exposed to Disease or Infections - 58% responded “Every day.”
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People - 46% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety - 38% responded “Very high responsibility.”
  • Deal With External Customers - 42% responded “Very important.”
  • Letters and Memos - 31% responded “Every day.”
  • Frequency of Decision Making - 35% responded “Every day.”
  • Time Pressure - 42% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
  • Frequency of Conflict Situations - 42% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
  • Spend Time Standing - 58% responded “More than half the time.”
  • Deal With Physically Aggressive People - 46% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results - 31% responded “Moderate results.”
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results - 46% responded “Moderate responsibility.”
  • Duration of Typical Work Week - 88% responded “40 hours.”
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate - 24% responded “Important.”
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable - 27% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”

Education

Percentage of RespondentsEducation Level Required
88%Bachelor's degree
8%Master's degree
4%Some college, no degree

Work Styles

  • Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Concern for Others - Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
  • Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Social Orientation - Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Innovation - Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
  • Leadership - Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
  • Independence - Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
  • Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
  • Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Analytical Thinking - Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
  • Achievement/Effort - Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.

Work Values

  • Relationships - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
  • Achievement - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
  • Independence - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.

Wages & Trends

  • Median wages (2017)
    • $22.92 hourly, $47,680 annual
  • Employment (2016)
    • 19,000 employees
  • Projected growth (2016-2026)
    • Average (5% to 9%)
  • Projected job openings (2016-2026)
    • 1,200

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