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What Does a Recreation Assistant Do?

Some recreational assistants may be required to have prior experience in physical therapy.
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  • Written By: Susan Grindstaff
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 19 November 2014
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A recreation assistant may have many different duties, depending on the specific work environment. In many cases, the job includes organizing recreational activities, overseeing storage or inventory of recreational supplies and equipment, and training and assisting activity participants. Employment in this field is sometimes available through education programs, sports clubs, and recreational activity centers. In addition, health spas, country clubs, and senior centers often offer recreation-oriented employment.

Most of the time, a recreation assistant works under the supervision of a recreation director. In many cases, the director may choose to delegate some of his work to an assistant. The amount and type of work delegated is generally left up to the individual director. In some cases, a recreation assistant might be required to be able to perform the job of a recreation director, in the event of a director’s absence.

The job of a recreation assistant often consists of custodial work directly related to recreation activities. This includes making sure equipment and supplies are clean and in working order. Responsibilities also typically include keeping a current inventory of all supplies necessary to conduct planned activities. In some cases, inventory control includes ordering needed supplies, though this responsibility usually is given to a recreation director.

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In some work environments, a recreation assistant might be expected to work directly with participants. Recreational centers for those with physical disabilities may require those who assist in activities to have some background in physical therapy. This is important because each participant may need individual help in performing various activities. Other work environments that could require personal assistance include senior centers and recreation centers that offer various types of recreational training.

Many jobs available for an assistant in recreation are in the health care industry. This includes nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, and continuous care centers. In addition to custodial and planning responsibilities, a recreation assistant employed in the field of health care might also be required to keep records detailing the progress of individual patients. These records may then be reviewed by a physical therapist to help determine if any adjustment should be made to treatment or activity levels of the patient.

The average yearly salary of a recreation assistant can vary. Those with a college degree in fields related to physical education or physical therapy tend to earn higher salaries. Work experience and geographic location can also be a factor in wage expectation. In the United States, the average yearly salary for a recreation assistant is around $42,000 US dollars (USD).

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