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Improving Physical Functioning Thru Recreation Therapy Services

bullet Adaptive Badminton
Submitted by Eileen Humpal of Simpson Meadows

Size of Group: 10-15

Equipment/Supplies Needed:  "Lollipop" bats, balloon

Activity/Treatment Objective or Expected Outcome:  socialization, physical fitness

Description of the Activity:

I have had great success with adapting badminton for use by my residents.  The only difference is this lollipop bats which I use.  They are Spectrum Foam Lollipop paddles - chunky foam, round, multicolored and light - easy for the residents to use (and not so easy to bonk someone on the head with) as a standard racket.  Much laughter during this activity, and none realized they were exercising!


Amphibious Vehicle Driver Training
Submitted by Shane Emmons of The Wilderness Trail Inc. (Dissolved 2/02) on February 13, 2002

Size: Individual Instruction, one or two in support

Equipment: Specially modified eight-wheeled amphibious vehicle specially adapted to be driven under supervision by persons with physical limitations.

Objective: Tremendous, measurable, increase in mental/physical coordination. Offers motivation through mobility. Requires cognative and psychomotor skills. When skills are mastered, vehicle can be used on designated off-road trails with proper driver and medical support.

Description: Open field setting. An array of cone barriers to be placed according to physical limitations of the driver. The driver (physically, not mentally impaired), negotiates barriers, obstacles and cones while driving specially modified eight-wheeled amphibious vehicle. Vehicle will have interchangeable control devices and operator securements, to adjust to limitations of driver. Unlike an ATV, this slow moving vehicle requires an understanding of where the back of the vehicle is at all times. This need for recognition of the relative position of the rear of the vehicle, to the command inputs by the operator, becomes a challenge, which has great relevance to applications in obtaining greater personal freedom and mobility in normal life. The vehicle, located in North Augusta, SC, is currently undergoing modifications for this purpose. The vehicle and concept has been reviewed by persons with physical therapy credentials and based on such feedback, the owner is seeking in put in order to classify the vehicle as a therapeutic device. This is necessitated by the relatively high cost of custom modifications and maintenance.

A person exhibiting sufficient mastery of skills could then be allowed recreational access to wilderness locations, with proper agency approval, medical and supervisory safety personnel. All non-medical questions can be answered through email. Pending site availability, owner is looking to make this available by the end of March,2002, at a location within 30 miles of Augusta, GA. The vehicle owner is a metal fabrication specialist, firefighter and emergency services instructor with an outsta nding safety record. He is seeking input from therapists, and the disabled, and is looking for potential revenue sources for operational expenses.

Adapted Badminton

submitted by Elaine Hayles on October 18, 2001

Size: 3-4

Equipment: badminton, balloon , net

Objective: To increase gross motor skills. To increase socialization.

Description: Try to get the balloon over the net by hitting it with the badminton racket. Wonderful for wheelchair users. Have participatns lean forward in their wheelchair a bit so they can use their upper body more. Should be done for 15 minutes. Be alert for tiredness in clients.

Face the Day (to strengthen tongue & facial muscles)

submitted by Jeanne Hart, Snake River Rehabilitation & Living Center

Size of Group: unlimited

Equipment: Round lollypops like Dum Dums and recording of the song "Lollypop" by the Chordells or on the "Stand By Me" sound track

Objective: To strengthen tongue and facial muscles.

Description: Play the song "Lollypop" during which each participant rolls the lollypop around in his or her mouth with the tongue.  When the song makes the popping sound have each participant pucker their lips and pull the lollypop out of their mouth also making the popping sound.


Please submit other physical functioning tx/activity ideas for others to use.

Activities & Tx pages sponsored by compuTR and maintained by Charles Dixon
If reprinting ideas from these pages, please give credit.


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