American Journal of Recreation Therapy 2023-03-13T17:52:49-04:00 Richard A. DeVito, Jr. Open Journal Systems <p><em><strong>American Journal of Recreation Therapy</strong> </em>is the unchallenged journal of record in the field and the gold standard for providing recreational therapists the latest research, techniques and advances in the use of recreational intervention.</p><p>Guided by Allison Wilder, PhD, CTRS/L and an internationally recognized editorial review board, <em><strong>American Journal of Recreation Therapy</strong></em>, in a seamless flow from theory to proven application, strives with each issue to help recreational therapists make recovery a reality for their patients of all ages and stages of disability.</p> Volume 21, Number 4 2023-03-13T17:52:49-04:00 American Journal of Recreation Therapy - 2022-12-01T00:00:00-05:00 Copyright (c) 2023 American Journal of Recreation Therapy A preliminary feasibility study of a virtual mentally stimulating activities program for older adults 2023-03-13T17:52:42-04:00 Caylee Weaver, MS Angie L. Sardina, PhD Tina M. K. Newsham, PhD Elizabeth Fugate-Whitlock, PhD <p>Objectives: To examine preliminary feasibility of a virtually mentally stimulating activities (VMSA) program for community-dwelling older adults (aim 1) and the impact of VMSA on loneliness, depressive symptoms, and satisfaction with life (aim 2).</p><p>Design: This was designed as a pre-experimental case study.</p><p>Setting: Virtual for community-dwelling participants.</p><p>Participants: Four older adults, age range from 67 to 79 (mean age = 72, SD = 4.6) who resided in the community and were active in a local senior resource center, were included in this study.</p><p>Intervention: A 4-week (eight sessions at 60 minutes/session) VMSA program as transformed from the in-person, evidence-based, Mentally Stimulating Activities Recreation Therapy program.</p><p>Main outcome measures: Preliminary feasibility, eg, acceptability, demand, implementation, and practicality, of the VMSA program was explored (aim 1). The efficacy of the VMSA program on loneliness (University of California, Los Angeles 3-Item Loneliness Scale), depressive symptoms (Patient Health Questionnaire—9-Item), and satisfaction with life (Satisfaction with Domains of Life Scale) was also explored (aim 2).</p><p>Results: Regarding aim 1, 97 percent of participants attended eight sessions (only one participant missed one session). All participants (100 percent) rated the program quality as “Excellent” (scoring 10/10), and 100 percent of participants recorded satisfaction as a 10/10. Most (75 percent) of the participants noted that the program was “somewhat” challenging, and 100 percent reported that the program met expectations. For aim 2, positive mean change across all participants was observed in loneliness and satisfaction with life scores; however, there was no change in depressive symptom scores across the eight sessions.</p><p>Conclusion: Findings from this preliminary feasibility and efficacy study show the potential viability of a VMSA program for community-dwelling older adults. Additional research within this area has the potential to provide recreation therapy professionals with a virtual program that promotes psychosocial health in older adults. Additional research, particularly with larger sample sizes, is needed to further examine feasibility and efficacy of such programming.</p> 2022-12-01T00:00:00-05:00 Copyright (c) 2023 American Journal of Recreation Therapy Comparative effectiveness of recreational therapy animal-assisted interventions for older adults with dementia 2023-03-13T17:52:46-04:00 Megan Hutchman Coil, CTRS Betsy Kemeny, PhD, CTRS <p>Recreational therapists’ use of animal-assisted interventions (AAIs) with older adults is gaining popularity. However, no known research compares the effectiveness of canine- and equine-assisted therapies to a typical recreational therapy (RT) social intervention. This research, using an alternating treatment design, compared the participant’s engagement, apathy, heart rate variability, and social responsiveness to equine, canine, and social interventions over five 2-hour sessions. Because identical protocols (grooming, leading, and feeding) were used, the variability in engagement, coherence, and social responsiveness likely relates to the different interventions. The participants’ familiarity with a particular animal and the size of the animals may impact their reaction to AAI. Incorporating AAI in RT may decrease socialization-related apathy and improve engagement for older adults with dementia.</p> 2022-12-01T00:00:00-05:00 Copyright (c) 2023 American Journal of Recreation Therapy Categories of activities of daily living skills: Implications for recreational therapists 2023-03-13T17:52:48-04:00 Melissa L. Zahl, PhD, MTRS, CTRS, FDRT Adam Parker, MS, CTRS Chris Read, MS, CTRS <p>Activities of daily living skills (ADLs) are functional skills that determine the independence of a person with a disability to complete a specific task and to live independently. Through the years, the concept of ADLs has evolved to include a hierarchical classification from basic to more complex activities. Categorization of ADLs identifies if an activity is needed to sustain life, function within a community independently, or for the fulfillment of pleasurable activities and social roles. The three categories, basic, instrumental, and advanced ADLs, can be observed by a clinician to determine current functional status as well as independent living. This article aims to identify ADLs and the categorization of ADLs and describe the three levels of ADLs (basic, instrumental, and advanced), assessment tools for the different levels of ADLs, and implications for recreational therapy practice.</p> 2022-12-01T00:00:00-05:00 Copyright (c) 2023 American Journal of Recreation Therapy