Recreational therapy, also known as therapeutic recreation, is a systematic process that utilizes recreation and other activity-based interventions to address the assessed needs of individuals with illnesses and/or disabling conditions, as a means to psychological and physical health, recovery and well-being.
The purpose of the RT process is to improve or maintain physical, cognitive, social, emotional and spiritual functioning in order to facilitate full participation in life. Services are provided or directly supervised by a “Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist” (CTRS). (NCTRC, 2015)
The Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) is the qualified provider of recreational therapy. Individuals seeking certification apply to NCTRC and must meet established standards that include education, experience, and continuing professional development. The Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) credential is granted by NCTRC after the specific educational and experiential qualifications are met, eligibility to take the exam is established, and testing is successfully completed. (NCTRC, 2015 website).