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Enhancing Well-being and Recovery: Celebrating National Therapeutic Recreation Month


February is National Therapeutic Recreation Month, a time to recognize the power of recreational activities to enhance physical, mental and emotional health.

Understanding Recreational Therapy

Recreational therapy involves the use of various activities and interventions to address the individual needs of people dealing with disabilities, illnesses or mental health challenges. It employs a person-centered approach, focusing on enhancing an individual’s overall quality of life by utilizing recreational activities tailored to their specific needs and preferences.

Multifaceted Benefits

At Citizen Advocates, we incorporate a variety of activities into our behavioral health and community support services that not only aid in rehabilitation and skill development but also promote joy and a sense of accomplishment.

  • Physical Health Improvement: Recreational therapy contributes significantly to physical well-being. Engaging in activities like sports, walking or hiking not only promotes physical fitness but also aids in improving motor skills, coordination and overall mobility. Our occupational therapy program uses activities like snowboarding and hiking to promote self-sufficiency, teamwork and healthy living.
  • Mental Health Enhancement: The impact of recreational therapy on mental health is profound. Activities like art therapy, music therapy or mindfulness-based practices help reduce stress, anxiety and depression. These activities foster a sense of accomplishment, improve self-esteem and promote relaxation and emotional regulation. Our Malone Outpatient Behavioral Health Clinic presents a weekly Art Therapy Group for clients. If you’re interested in attending, call 518-483-3261 to learn more.
  • Social Connection and Community Integration: Recreational therapy fosters social interaction and community integration, especially for individuals with disabilities or those feeling isolated. Participating in group activities encourages socialization, teamwork and the development of essential communication skills. Our Crimson Phoenix and Mountain Crest community clubs provide a warm and friendly setting for individuals who may be experiencing emotional difficulties or mental health issues to participate in a range of activities, including art, cooking, gardening and more.
  • Improved Quality of Life: By promoting a sense of joy, purpose and fulfillment, recreational therapy contributes significantly to an individual’s overall quality of life. It encourages individuals

to explore new interests, hobbies and passions. For example, a group of Citizen Advocates’ clients across several Community Support, Community Living and Behavioral Health programs recently began meeting weekly for an afternoon of bowling and fellowship. The outings combine physical and social activity, bringing people together to boost physical, mental and emotional health.

Embracing Recreational Therapy

At Citizen Advocates, we believe in empowering individuals, fostering independence and promoting inclusivity. We strive to be a beacon of hope and support for individuals with disabilities, offering them pathways to heal, grow and thrive in all aspects of their lives.

Join us in celebrating the profound impact of recreation therapy this month. Together, we can continue to make a difference in the lives of many, fostering a healthier, more inclusive community for all.