RT Blog

Location: Indiana, United States

I became a Professor Emeritus after serving 29 years as a recreational therapy faculty member at Indiana University. I'm a long-time Hoosier, having grown up in Hanover, Indiana. My RT practitioner work was in psych/mental health. After completing my Ph.D. at the University of Illinois, my first faculty position was at the University of North Texas. RT has been a wonderful profession for me as I have had the opportunity to serve as an author and national leader.

Monday, May 30, 2011

ATRAnet is Growing but Slowly

In recently submitting a post on ATRAnet I noticed there are now 260 on ATRAnet. This is the highest number I recall seeing. I'm glad ATRAnet is growing but wish even more would take advantage of it.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

TRO Conference has a Strong Program

I just went to the Therapeutic Recreation Ontario website to have another look at the TRO Conference program. It impressed me as being very strong.

One thing I'll call for in my keynote address to the TRO Conference is greater interactions between RTs from Canada and the United States. It seems to me that we are really missing the boat by not interacting more with our Canadian colleagues.

I've suggested, as a starting point, that ATRA join CTRA in a joint celebration of RT Week or RT Month -- whatever is chosen. Still I haven't seen much movement toward this. It seems to me that the simple act of celebrating our profession at the same time should not be a difficult first step to take.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

RT Postion in Hawaii

From Jessica Peters via the ATRA Facebook page:

JOB OPENING in Hawaii!!
Recreation Therapist as a DoD Contractor through CasePro, Inc.
Working with Naval Health Clinic Hawaii, serving active duty Marines and Sailors who are Wounded Warriors.

I have been working at this position the past 2 years, but am relocating back to the mainland! Amazing job and salary is fantastic!

Treatment groups consist of: Daily Physical Training(adaptive exercise), Small Groups(cognitive games, pilates, bike rides, boogie boarding), and Special Events(monthly surfing event, hiking, kayaking, snorkeling, spearfishing)

Contracting company asked me to help them in recruiting since they have no experience with Recreation Therapists...I was their first.

Questions---Let me know! I'd love to see a BYU Grad get this job!

To apply, go to CasePro's website and submit your resume.

TRO Conference is "Sold Out"

Danny Pettry, M.S., CTRS, commented that he would like to be able to attend the Therapetic Recreation Ontario Conference next week in Toronto. I wish he could too --but I just learned that the conference has sold out.

The fact that TRO is a sell out is of course great news as I'm doing the keynote for the conference and a couple of educational sessions. The Alberta Therapeutic Recreation Association Conference held in Calgary last October, where I did the keynote and a number of other sessions, attracted the largest number of participants in its history.

Of course, I'd like to think that having me on the program had some correlation with the large numbers in Toronto and Calgary. It probably doesn't, but let me think that. Okay?! :-)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Save RT at UNO and in Nebraska

There is a movement to save the RT program at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. It is the only professional preparation program in Nebraska. If anyone has suggestions about how the RT Blog can be helpful, please let me know.

Next Week Toronto!

Next week I go to Toronto to deliver the keynote address to the Therapeutic Recreation Ontario Conference. The title of my talk is "Perspectives on Our Profession: A Nearly 50 Year Journey." An alternative title might be "Looking Back to Look Forward," as what makes looking back meaningful is that it helps us to look forward.

In the afternoon I'll do two educational sessions on my Health Protection/Health Promotion Model. I always enjoy presenting on my conceptual model.

The opportunity to share ideas in Canada and to meet Canadian colleagues is something I relish. It should be fun.

Monday, May 23, 2011

More on ATRAnet -- But Why No Greater Numbers?

I just posted a message on ATRAnet regarding a news release from Indiana University announcing that Bryan McCormick has been named the Chair of the Department of Park, Recreation, and Tourism at IU. When I did, I received a messaage stating there are now 258 individuals who subscribe to the ATRAnet listserve.

This figure is the highest I recall seeing in terms of the number on ATRAnet. But doesn't it seem to you that there should be more of us who take advantage of ATRAnet?

If you don't subscribe to ATRAnet, please do so. And please do tell your colleagues that they should subscribe to ATRAnet too.

Accessibility Guidelines for Health Settings

Through Disability.gov I discovered guidelines for making health settings accessible to people with disabilities. "Removing Barriers to Health Care: Guide to Health Professionals," is published by The Center for Universal Design and the North Carolina Office on Disability and Health.

the guidelines can be found at:

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Temple Non-tenure Track Positons

I almost missed it because it went to my junk mail for some reason. From the ATRAnet Listserv comes this announcement which I've abbreviated:

Temple University’s Therapeutic Recreation Program is aggressively recruiting two full-time, non-tenure-track faculty members who will bring strengths in teaching and applied research to the program.

Successful applicants will have an advanced degree (ABD, PhD preferred) and be certified or eligible for and willing to seek certification as a Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS). Other certifications, particularly certification as a Child Life Specialist (CLS) are desirable. Demonstrated practical experience in the field of therapeutic recreation is required. Experience in college teaching is highly desirable as is experience with on-line instruction and supervision of graduate level research.

For consideration, please send curriculum vitae with cover letter, statement of teaching and research interests, and the names and telephone numbers and email addresses of 3-5 professional references to Mark Salzer, Department Chairperson (msalzer@temple.edu). Please indicate NTT TR Program application in the "subject" line.

Questions about the position can be directed to Kathy Coyle, TR Program Coordinator (ccoyle@temple.edu).

Catherine Coyle, Ph.D, CTRS
Professor, Department of Rehabilitation Sciences
College of Health Professions & Social Work
1700 N. Broad St., Suite 304
Philadelphia, PA 19122
215.204.6731 (office)

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Obesity Plus Arthritis Equals Even Less Exercise

Today's MedPage Today contained an article which indicated that obese adults with arthritis are even less likely to increase their physical activity than those who don't have arthritis.

This report on research is just one of many that indicate the importance of RTs providing physical activity programs. Yet, I believe, our professional prepartion programs today do not do a good job of preparing RTs to design and conduct physical activity programs. What say you?

Friday, May 20, 2011

ATRA and NCTRC Announce CEU Pre-approval Program

NCTRC has distributed the following announcement:

The American Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA) and the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC) are proud to announce the formation of a joint committee to establish a CEU Pre-approval Program. The purpose of the CEU Pre-approval Program is to improve services to CTRSs seeking to complete recertification requirements by assuring that potential ATRA CEU opportunities are approved by NCTRC prior to enrollment. It is envisioned that the CEU Pre-approval Program will result in an improved level of CEU related offerings and ultimately will expand the depth of critical knowledge gained via the NCTRC recertification process.

Representatives from both organizations have been working diligently during the past several months to complete a draft pre-approval process. A pilot project to test the newly developed process will commence with the 2011 ATRA Annual Conference to be held in Indianapolis, IN, September 18-21. CTRSs who attend the ATRA Annual Conference will be able to participate in educational sessions and earn continuing education hours that are pre-approved by NCTRC. It is anticipated that if the pre-approval process is successful during the initial pilot phase, then the program will be expanded to include other conferences and CEU related events.

Additional information about the CEU Pre-approval Program will be forthcoming from the joint committee on behalf of both organizations.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Buettner & Others Publish in Gerontological Nursing

Linda Buettner, Ph.D., CTRS, from the University of North Carolina Greenboro, is the first author of an article that appears in the May issue of Gerontological Nursing. The title of the article is "Animal-Assisted Therapy for Clients with Dementia."

I think it is great that Lin is published in a nuring journal. It is always good to have RT authors publish in journals of other health care disciplines. And I might add, the article is extensive and one that anyone with interest in using animal-assisted therapy with persons with dementia could profit from reading.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Presentors Sought for WV Rec Therapy Workshop

From Danny Pettry, M.S., CTRS, via the ATRAnet Listserv:

Hello fellow Recreational Therapists,

I'm seeking volunteers who could present for a one-day Rec. Therapy workshop at River Park Hospital in Huntington, West Virginia in March 2012. Please send me a quick email if you think you’d be interested.

Our plan is to have 4 training sessions (worth a total of 5 clock hours) in one day for Recreational Therapists and allied professionals who live in the West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky Tri-State area.

We’re planning on having two (90-minute) sessions and two (60-minute) sessions. I plan to present one of these four sessions.

Here are some of the topics that we’d really like to have:
·Professionalism in Recreational Therapy
·Rules and Regulations for Coverage of Rec. Therapy Services
·Writing measurable/ functional outcome goals
·Biofeedback Techniques
·Play Therapy Techniques
·Importance of certification/ licensure (public protection)

Please send me a quick email if you’d be interested in presenting a session at our one-day workshop. Thanks.



Contact Information:
Danny Pettry, M.S., C.T.R.S., River Park Hospital, 1230-6th Avenue, Huntington, West Virginia 25701
Email: danny@dannypettry.com
Phone: 304-412-4065

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Tai Chi Helps Prevent Falls, Aids Mental Health

MedPage Today published a report explaining that tai chi appears to be helpful in preventing falls and in improving the psychological health of older persons. However, negative findings for the overall health effects were found when tai chi was used with clients with rheumatoid arthritis and cancer.

The report was based on four systematic reviews of the effects of tai chi that appeared in the British Journal of Sports Medicine in an article titled "Systematic reviews of tai chi: An overview" (2011; DOL: 10.1136/bjsm.2010.080622).

Monday, May 16, 2011

Resources for Interns & Clinical Supervisors

As many RT students begin their summer internships, I thought it might be a good time to remind the students and their clinical supervisors about two resources available to them at no cost. These are: (a) the Glossary of Recreation Therapy and Occupational Therapy; and (b) the video titled “Clinical Supervision.”

Both are available as free services provided by the Indiana University Library Scholarworks program. Most search engines will pick up the Glossary when the full title is typed in. But in case you need it, the web address for the Glossary is: https://scholarworks.iu.edu/dspace/bitstream/handle/2022/6474/

Likewise, Google and other search engines should find the Recreation Therapy Videos, under which you can locate the “Clinical Supervision” video. After you go to the RTV website, there you will find a list of all 23 RTV videos. Click on the title “Clinical Supervision” and when it comes up then click on the address and the video will come up. To start it click on the triangle in the middle of the screen. In case you need it, the web address for the Recreation Therapy Videos is: https: //scholarfworks.iu.edu/dspace/handle/2022/3378

"Biggest Public Health Problem of 21st Century"

I just read a promotion for a webinar. It was titled: "Physical Inactivity: The Biggest Public Health Problem of the 21st Century." Whether you believe this or not, you must recognize we have an obesity problem in the U.S. and Canada.

What is RT doing as a profession to combat the obesity problem?

Friday, May 13, 2011

New Website on Weight Management from Wake Forest Med School

Supported by a grant from the National Cancer Institute, the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine has designed a website on concepts of nutrition, exercise, and weight management. The address of the website is http://www.newlifestyle.org

The idea behind the website is to help future physicians to better understand the negative health and financial costs of obesity and to be sensitive to patients’ problems with weight management. Although designed for medical students, the website is open to all and can be a resource for recreational therapy educators and students. Information for students and educators, taken from the website, appears below.

STUDENTS - Within this site you will find a series of learning modules created by researchers and educators at Wake Forest School of Medicine. Each module covers one topic concerning issues related to obesity and care for overweight patients. Additionally, you will find videos with virtual patient/doctor interactions to help guide you to a higher degree of sensitivity as you work with patients who are struggling with diet, exercise and weight loss.

EDUCATORS - Developed by faculty at Wake Forest School of Medicine, these free instructional modules have been successfully tested among medical students in all four years at our institution. Educators from other medical schools and disciplines are welcome to use these modules in their classrooms as well. Learners can access these materials in class, at home or in workshops, seminars and other settings. Educators can utilize them alone or as an extension to existing courses.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

South FL Conference is Next Week

From Allyson Dedic, CTRS via the ATRAnet Listserv:

The South FL conference is NEXT WEEK (May 18-20, 2011 in Ft. Lauderdale, FL)!!! Attendees can receive up to 18 hours of CEU’s with a lot of networking opportunities!!!

Space is becoming extremely limited, so ACT NOW if you would like to attend!! Hotel space is also very limited due to the increased number of out of town attendees… if you have a problem booking a room, please call me and I will do what I can to see if accommodations can be made!

Visit www.whitehallboca.com/conference.html for more details!!

Allyson Dedic, CTRS
Director of Therapeutic Recreation
Whitehall Boca Raton
7300 Del Prado Circle South
Boca Raton, FL 33433
(561) 237-3818 direct
(561) 392-6031 fax

AoA Grants on Translational Research

I happened to see the announcement below and thought some RT scholars might have interest. My guess is that such a grant would have to be submitted with the university's Institute on Aging. The announcement follows:

Overview Information
Participating Organization(s) National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Administration on Aging (AoA), (http://www.aoa.gov/)

Components of Participating Organizations National Institute on Aging (NIA)

Funding Opportunity Title Translational Research to Help Older Adults Maintain their Health and Independence in the Community (R01)

Activity Code R01 Research Project Grant

Announcement Type New

Related Notices None

Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number PA-11-123

Companion FOA PA-11-124, R21 Exploratory/Developmental Grant

Number of Applications See Section III. 3. Additional Information on Eligibility.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s) 93.866, 93.213

FOA Purpose The National Institute on Aging (NIA) and the Administration on Aging (AoA) invite applications using the R01 award mechanism for translational research that moves evidence-based research findings towards the development of new interventions, programs, policies, practices, and tools that can be used by community-based organizations to help elderly individuals remain healthy and independent, and living in their own homes and communities. The goal of this FOA is to support translational research involving collaborations between academic research centers and community-based organizations with expertise serving the elderly (such as city and state health departments, city/town leadership councils, and Area Agencies on Aging) that will enhance our understanding of practical tools, techniques, programs and policies that communities across the nation can use to more effectively respond to needs of their aging populations.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

RT Internship Opportunities in Wyoming

Via the ATRAnet Listserv from Kathy Argyle, CTRS comes this announcment:

The Wyoming State Hospital, in Evanston, WY has two vacant fall RT internship positions. We provide a 15 week (600 hour) internship, along with housing, meals and $8.10 per hour. Students are fully involved in the treatment process in an in-patient psychiatric setting where they can gain practical clinical skills under the supervision of an experienced CTRS.

Currently we employ 7 full time CTRS’ and one RT Tech. We provide services on a variety of treatment units to approximately 95 clients.

Please have students contact me if they are still seeking a fall internship. We will also have upcoming spring and summer positions available for 2012!

Kathy Argyle, CTRS
Internship Coordinator
Wyoming State Hospital
(307) 789-3464 ext. 468

Life Expectancy now 77.9 Years

I recently read that life expectancy in the United States is 77.9 (and Canada even has a higher life expectancy). The same Disability.gov article stated that once people reach the age of 80, the chance of them having a disability increases to 75%.

Thus, with 10,000 Elder Boomers (aka, Baby Boomers) turning 65 everyday in the US, we will have a lot more elderly people with disabilities. The Disability.gov article states that by 2020, the number of Americans over 65 in long-term care will increase to 12 million.

Of course, most of the older persons with disabilities will live in the community. Thus there will be a great potential for RTs to serve these persons both in their communities and in long-term care.

It is sure something to ponder. I hope our universities are preparing RT students with the backgrounds to be able to serve this emerging population.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Positions at Oregon State Hospital

Michael S. Ratliff, CTRS, Director of Therapeutic Recreation at the Oregon State Hospital has announced openings for three Rehabilitation Therapists on the Forfensic Services unit.

Those with interest may contact Michael. His phone is (503) 945-2967. His email address is michael.s.ratliff@state.or.us

Post 1,401

It is hard for me to believe but the counter has shown that this post is number 1,401 on the RT Blog.

McCormick New Chair at Indiana University

I just learned that Bryan McCormick, Ph.D., CTRS, has accepted the position of chair of the department at Indiana University. Congratulations to Bryan! He will be a wonderful chair.

Friday, May 06, 2011

Miami Valley Hospital RT Opening

From the ATRAnet Listserv comes this position opening:

Miami Valley Hospital- Recreational Therapist FT, Full Time, posted 04/18/11

Miami Valley Hospital, Dayton, OH
Day shift , 8 hours long

This position functions as a member of an interdisciplinary treatment team on the Mental Health Inpatient Unit. The team plans and delivers clinical services, case management coordination, Recreational and recreation therapy to adult and geriatric patients.

The Recreational Therapist provides Therapeutic Activities Evaluations with recommendations for ongoing care and recreational therapy services in the form of individual and group sessions. She/he provides clinical insight to the treatment team with special emphasis on her/his area of expertise.

Education: Bachelors degree in recreation therapy required.
Certification: Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist.

Apply Online
https://php.recruitmax.com/ENG/careerportal/Job_Profile.cfm?szOrderID=17061&szReturnToSearch=1&&szWordsToHighlight= ATRAnet Listserv

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Compton Retiring from IU

I just received an email message from David Compton. In it he indicated that he is retiring from his facutly postion at Indiana University. David has had a long and distinguished career in our profession.

Physical Activity Decreases Blood Sugar

A JAMA study (2011, 305(17): 1808-1809) was reported on in today's MedPage Today. The report stated that researchers found that structured aerobic exercise programs and resistance training regimens (or a combination of the two) were associated with dcreases in glycated hemoglobin levels. It was noted that more than 150 minutes of exercise per week produced the best reduction.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

AJRT Call for Papers

American Journal of Recreation Therapy , an independent double-blind peer-reviewed print and online journal, welcomes original research manuscripts that contribute to the field of therapeutic and recreational therapies in the management of rehabilitation and quality of life for disabled persons of all ages. The journal also receives and publishes original papers regarding all uses of recreation therapy, as well as articles on the legal and regulatory issues surrounding this important field.

Manuscripts are accepted for review as original clinical or basic science research, case reports, clinical reviews, literature reviews, practical application, inservice updates and letters to the editor. Manuscript submission is handled electronically. To submit a manuscript, please follow this link to http://ajrt.allentrack2.net . For additional author guidelines and instructions please visit the journal's webpage , www.recreationtherapy.org .

American Journal of Recreation Therapy is the journal of record in the field and features a distinguished Editorial Review Board led by Editor-In-Chief, Professor Linda Buettner, PhD, LRT, CTRS. Dr. Buettner has a long standing reputation as one of the country's most respected leaders in the challenging field of recreation therapy.

As Editor-in-Chief, Dr. Buettner guides the journal's leadership role at a time when the spotlight has been switched on to the rising problem of abuse and poor quality of care for the disabled and long term care patients. We are actively seeking papers dealing with all aspects of recreation therapy.

These include:

- Basic Science and Research in RT
- Innovative RT therapies for pediatrics, rehab, mental health, and geriatrics
- Evidence to support recreational therapy
- Innovative education and training for recreational therapy students
- Best practices for various disability groups
- Advocacy and public policy issues vital to the profession
- and more...

To submit a manuscript, please visit http://ajrt.allentrack2.net . There are no submission, editing or layout fees for articles submitted and published in the journal.

American Journal of Recreation Therapy features a short time to publish as well as an online edition of the journal that can integrate audio and video presentations not available with the print version. Published authors receive print copies of journal with their article.

For other details, contact the publisher, Weston Medical Publishing at 781-899-2702 x114, or visit the Web page at www.recreationtherapy.org .

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

"National Teachers Day" is Today

I just read that today is "National Teachers Day." A special thanks to all university professors who teach RT!

Access Pass for Persons with Disabilities

The Access Pass is a free lifetime pass for US citizens wtih permanent disabilities to the National Parks and other Federal Recreational Lands. Access passes may be obtgained in person from a participating Federal recreation site or office. I obtained this information from a National Park Service website:

Motivation to Get Clients to Exercise

In yesterday's issue of USA Today there was a report "Obesity linked to less sexual satisfaction." It seems obese men and women were "significantly less sexually satisfied than the general population." So there is some research to share with clients who need motivation to exercise!

Monday, May 02, 2011

Annual South Florida Conference Reminder

From Allyson Dedic, CTRS, via the ATRAnet Listserv:

We are only 3 weeks away from the 3rd Annual South FL Conference located in at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Ft. Lauderdale FL, May 18-20, 2011!!! Attendee’s may receive up to 18 hours of CEU’s!

Hotel rooms are running very low so if you need hotel accommodations, please act quickly!!! You can get all of the information you will need to be a part of this great event on our website: www.whitehallboca.com/confernece.html

I look forward to seeing everyone there!

Allyson Dedic, CTRS
Director of Therapeutic Recreation
Whitehall Boca Raton
7300 Del Prado Circle South
Boca Raton, FL 33433
(561) 237-3818 direct
(561) 392-6031 fax

Sports and Athletes with Disabilities Info Sites

Today's announcements on Disability.gov included a couple of websites that RTs may wish to check out.

One is a Directory of Sports Organizations for Athletes with Disabilities published by the NRH Rehabilitation Research and Training Center. The web address for the Directory is:

The other is the Museum of DisABILITY History - Sports and DisABILITIES. The website is:

Sunday, May 01, 2011

New Crafts Book by Old Colleague

I just saw an announcement in Charlie Dixon's Newsletter that Lois Keener has authored a new book titled Teaching Crafts: Written for Therapists and Activity Instructors. Lois was a colleague of mine back in the 1960s in the Recreation Therapy Department of Evansville State Hospital. Congratulations Lois!

Physical Exercise Improves Memory

Research has shown the effects of exercise on older adults (average age of 60) produced a positive result when subjects were tested for spatial memory. All improved but those who improved the most were those who walked around a track – rather than those who did yoga or resistance training.

In a story in the April, 2011, APA Monitor on Psychology, it was reported that the researchers concluded that any exercise is good for memory but walking may be the best exercise for age-related brain shrinkage.

Just one more piece of evidence to suggest that RTs working with older adults need to provide physical activity programs – and that walking is a good form of physical activity.