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Utilizing outreach therapeutic recreation to determine the leisure experiences of recently hospitalized older adults

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Title: Utilizing outreach therapeutic recreation to determine the leisure experiences of recently hospitalized older adults
Author: Gallant, Paul W.
Degree Master of Human Kinetics - MHK
Program Human Kinetics
Copyright Date: 1995
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to analyze the subjective meaning that leisure experiences and involvement in a Therapeutic Recreation Outreach Program (T.R.O.P.) had for eight recently hospitalized older adults. The specific research questions were: What were their leisure interests? How did participants describe the benefits of leisure? Did they benefit from T.R.O.P.? What were the facilitating factors which contributed towards their enjoyment of leisure? What were the constraints which prevented participants from achieving their leisure goals and interests? What were the relationships between leisure satisfaction and life satisfaction? A total of eight participants were recruited over a five month period and agreed to participate in T.R.O.P. They met the following inclusion criteria. Participants were: in patients of St. Paul's Hospital; at least 55 years of age; able to speak, read, and comprehend English fluently; living in the Lower Mainland area of British Columbia; and, returning to non-institutionalized community living. The case study design entailed a number of data collection strategies that occurred during the in-hospital and outreach phases of the T.R.O.P. intervention. These included two semi-structured interviews with each participant, observations and field notes throughout T.R.O.P., and a review of medical charts. In addition, the participants completed three forced-choice leisure worksheets which examined their leisure interests, leisure needs, and leisure constraints. Data analysis was based on Huberman and Miles (1994) interactive model of data display, conclusion drawing, and verification. The participants perceived leisure benefits to be: "enjoyment", "time to think and forget your troubles", "relaxation", "a sense of satisfaction", and "maintaining an interest in life". These benefits are similar to those described in the literature. Many of the leisure interests of the participants were solitary and spectator types of experiences which tended to occur within their home or near their home. An additional finding was that participants were frustrated by not being able to pursue many of their leisure interests due to declining health. The main benefits of T.R.O.P. were identified as knowledge of resources and increased social contacts. The leisure constraints most frequently reported were related to poor health status, physical disability, lack of physical skills, lack of knowledge of resources, procrastination, and lack of social support. Social support and social relationships were perceived to be major facilitating factors towards leisure enjoyment. Several of the participants' experiences in the hospital were perceived to alleviate social isolation, a finding that has not been explored in the leisure literature. Social relations were also perceived to be important contributors towards the leisure satisfaction and life satisfaction. The findings also revealed that the most pertinent information related to leisure meaning and involvement was obtained through visiting and conversing with participants in their homes, and not through formal in-hospital leisure assessment procedures. The nature of the findings of this study have implications for future research and practice.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/3725
Series/Report no. UBC Retrospective Theses Digitization Project [http://www.library.ubc.ca/archives/retro_theses/]

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