Positive use of leisure time enhances mental and emotional health, functional abilities, independence, and quality of life. When participating in recreation therapy services, residents discover hidden talents, understand the value of teamwork, and experience benefits of healthy leisure and recreation. They take part in planning activities and learn skills to make healthy decisions when they return home.

As part of their Relapse Prevention Plan, residents examine their past leisure lifestyle choices, how their treatment issues affected their leisure, how their use of free time played a part in their current problems, and/or how recreation and leisure has been and can be an effective coping skill.

Residents and their families also participate in a recreation therapy group periodically while in our care. Goals for these groups are based on the resident's individual treatment goals. Frequency of sessions depends on the location of the family.

Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialists (CTRS) and Recreation Therapy Technicians lead and/or supervise recreation therapy, which helps residents manage symptoms of their illness.

Recreation therapy is provided Monday through Saturday, including holidays. On-campus groups typically last for one hour. Off-campus group outings last from two hours to a full day, depending on tier status.

  • Tier 0 - recreation therapy on the unit.
  • Tier 1 - groups on campus (inside and outside).
  • Tier 2 - on-campus groups and one outing each week.
  • Tiers 3 and 4 - on-campus groups and two outings each week. Once a month, Tier 3 and 4 residents plan an outing under the direction of staff.

On-campus Activities

Groups and activities focus on the following topics:

  • Leisure education and recreational activities
  • Social and coping skills
  • Anger control training
  • Decision-making and moral reasoning
  • Self-esteem and self-efficacy
  • Low & high Ropes Course elements
  • Team-building and sportsmanship
  • Communication and trust
  • Stress management and relaxation
  • Diversity awareness
  • Outdoor skills
  • Arts and crafts

Outings may include:

Winter activities: ice skating, cross-country skiing, sledding.

Summer activities: hiking, day camping, outdoor cooking, sports and games.

Educational Field Trips: Museum of Idaho, BYU-Idaho Planetarium, Idaho Falls Public Library, Idaho Falls Zoo.

Community Service: humanitarian projects, clean-up at the local parks and zoo, and trail maintenance.

Cultural Events: plays and musicals at the Colonial Arts Center, outdoor events during the summer, local parades and festivities.

Recreational Activities: bowling, batting cages, roller-skating, billiards, swimming, trips to local recreation center, kite flying, baseball games, miniature golfing, movies, YMCA and other group sports and games