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13
Program Delivery
and the Many Modes
of Recreation
Introduction
• Present types of services and pathways people
take in the profession.
• Explain the characteristic that makes recreation
unique from every other profession: programming.
• Introduce the following activity groups:
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–
–
–
Recreational sport
Fitness and wellness
Outdoor and adventure
Arts and culture
Delivery Systems
for Recreation Opportunities
The original source for recreation is the
mental self we construct with every choice
we make, every moment of each day.
• Read or design a page in a journal
• Shoot a few hoops or ski in uncharted territory
• Wander through a mall to watch people or see
what’s new
• Go berry picking if the season is right
• Connect with family and friends
(continued)
Delivery Systems
for Recreation Opportunities
(continued)
• Young children engage in inventive play and absorb
themselves in creating games, pictures, heroes, and
homes.
• During their school years, people explore interesting
opportunities.
• Knowledge of a world beyond family and neighborhood
grows. It is natural for people to seek firsthand
experience with what others are doing and enjoying
and to create personal and social communities bound
by shared interests and values.
Organized Recreation
Happens Through a Variety of Agents
•
•
•
•
•
Religious institutions
Volunteer or nonprofit organizations
Schools and colleges
Community services
Military: Morale, Welfare and Recreation Services
(United States) and Personnel Support Agency
(Canada)
• Employee groups
• Tourist attractions
• Private businesses
These can be distinguished by their source of funding.
Everyone Needs Personal Interests
and Opportunities for Choice
• Recreation: doing what is needed to recreate, uplift, and heal the human spirit.
• What makes something recreational is,
therefore, a matter of personal experience
and learned preference.
• Variations are due to culture, geography or
climate, gender, social class, and religion.
(continued)
Everyone Needs Personal Interests
and Opportunities for Choice (continued)
• Recreation is the most important, if not the
only, choice we have control over in
everyday life.
• Work, although stimulating to many, is
neither awe inspiring nor a rewarding
creative challenge.
• Recreation may be our only reliable source
for feeling good about ourselves.
Optimal Recreation:
When the AHA and WOW Happen
• Discover an interest, work at becoming good
at it, and enjoy yourself immensely when
doing it.
• Enter whole-heartedly into doing things that
challenge you, and work to master them.
• Recreation professionals facilitate design
programs for people to learn, to show off, to
share with others, and to test themselves in
the spotlight.
Recreation Program Develops the Self
Why are recreation choices such powerful
factors in developing the self?
• Recreation is like a theatrical stage: You act upon
your self. You get involved doing something!
• Your life stage is a significant frame of reference in
all the choices you make.
• Hold the things you need to learn at each life stage in
the “back of your mind.” They silently guide your
perceptions about what would be a good thing to do.
Discussion:
Subject: Achieving Goals
Why should recreation allow people to pursue
some of their own goals?
•
How would this be achieved through recreation
programming”
Recreation: Readily Available
for Taking Action
• Fewer obligations attached, as close as pencil and
paper
• Close to home and readily available or at a distance
that requires planning
• Mental pictures, creative ideas, or images of people
who are role models
• Alone or with other people
Note that if the mind is not activated and you are not
feeling a sense of satisfaction with yourself, probably
whatever you are doing is not important. You may just
be filling (killing) time.
Programming: Briefly
• The fundamental building block in the field of
recreation is programming: designing experiences
for people to come together, to engage in
challenges, and to have fun.
• Recreation programs take 5 forms:
– Instruction
– Drop-in
– Club
– Competition or exhibition
– Special event
(Farrell & Lundegren, 1983)
Program Format Examples
1. Instruction: fencing class, swim program,
photography class, watercolor painting class
2. Drop-in: open swim, open tennis court, afterschool games and crafts, open gym for basketball
3. Club: Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, model railroaders
club, drama club, Golden Agers club, teen club
4. Competition: recreation leagues, tournaments,
juried art shows, life guard or martial arts tests,
swim meets
5. Special event: Fourth of July celebrations,
father–daughter dances, pancake breakfasts,
recitals, concerts in the park
Intention of Recreation Programming
• Programming is a combination of knowledge and
practiced skill. Design opportunities so that people
will interact with “leisure objects and
environments” deriving a rewarding sense of
meaning and self-worth from their personal
investment (doing it).
• Programmers envision what “might” happen as
people come together with each other and each set
of objects as a context for self-discovery, selfexpression, learning, sharing, and enjoyment.
• Through envisioning, the program plan is created,
edited, revised, and mentally perfected.
Programmatic Areas
• Recreational sport includes individual and team activities and
loosely organized games and technically ruled sports played in
indoor, field, natural land, and water environments.
– Sports and games begin with skills to be learned by
players and advance into more or less organized systems
for play.
• Fitness and wellness: A variety of types of weight-loss, stressreduction, and muscle-toning programs are evident in all recreation
organizations.
– Individual demand has boosted expansion of spas, health
resorts, and meditation and yoga centers in addition to
being prevalent in public and nonprofit organizations.
(continued)
Programmatic Areas (continued)
• Outdoor and adventure often seems to cross
paths with sports and games.
– When the outdoor environment is necessary for
the experience and when participation expands
knowledge of the environment and one’s self,
the activity can be assigned to this program
area.
(continued)
Programmatic Areas (continued)
• Arts and culture: The person develops an aesthetic
understanding and, if directly participating, performance
skills.
– Art includes crafts, such as sewing, sculpting, and
designing stained glass, and fine arts, such as
painting, drama, music, and formal dance disciplines.
– Culture can include music, dance, art, and literature
fads and folk arts that maintain traditions such as
ethnic dance, batik, and weaving.
Is This the Life for You?
Types of Service and Career Paths
• Imagine working to improve the quality of life for
people and their communities.
• Two levels depict a conceptual difference between
jobs:
– Working directly with clientele or resources
– Working primarily to manage the system or
organization
• Most recreation professionals developed their
interest in the field from firsthand experiences:
playing on a recreational sports team, taking
swimming or acting lessons, or joining an interest
group or club.
Ponder This
Joseph Lee’s idea that no matter what is
provided in recreation, if there is not the
opportunity that lights someone up on the
inside, or worse, if someone is not offered
opportunities from which to choose, life will
be unsatisfying.
—Joseph Lee, at the 1911
National Playground Association conference
“Good” Recreation Professionals
Need . . .
• Understanding that goes beyond one’s self, one’s
family, and others like one’s self
• Ability to think from the perspective of other people
. . . to see the world as people see it and
experience it
• Desire to dissuade people from lives centered on
work and money
• Ability to show people that the freedoms in
recreational choices are numerous: join, practice,
change, quit; most can’t do that as freely with work
Recreation is not an obligation; it is a choice for
happiness.
Discussion
• Consider the following statement: Every
moment of each day, with every choice we
make, we construct the mental self.
– Discuss how the statement relates to the
engagement in, or provision of, recreation and
leisure.

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