Residential Treatment Centers Help Teens Develop Healthy Lifestyle Through Fitness Programming
Residential Treatment Centers Help Teens Develop Healthy Lifestyle Through Fitness ProgrammingRecreation therapy and fitness have been part of Equinox programming since our inception and we intend to continue to channel even more focus into fitness programming in order to help students get the most out of the therapeutic process. This is part of Equinox RTC’s ongoing commitment to the research proving a strong correlation between fitness and mental wellness. As teens participate in fitness programming in a residential treatment center, they take steps towards changing their unhealthy patterns and making healthier lifestyle choices.
Fitness Programming at Equinox RTCStudents participate in high-intensity interval training classes led by our fitness director, Jeremiah Horne, 3 days a week at the gym on-campus. Other workouts may include team sports, like ultimate frisbee, basketball, soccer, or flag football. After dinner, students have the option of how to fill their free time–studying, doing something creative, or choosing something active and playing outside with peers. Every weekend, the students participate in an off-campus recreation activity. This includes adventures like mountain biking, skiing, snowboarding, bouldering and various other outdoor activities. Every quarter our students participate in an overnight camping trip, providing opportunity to apply the outdoor skills they learn and to challenge the individual and team in a setting that may be outside their comfort zone.
Why Fitness MattersThe focus on fitness at Equinox is a key part of the students’ overall growth. Research has identified healthy nutrition and regular exercise as having a positive impact on both emotional well-being and brain functions such as attention, memory, focus and concentration. There is also evidence that regular cardiovascular and strength-training exercise can be as or even more effective than medical treatment of depression and anxiety. “Fitness has a profound impact because when they are able to find a positive and beneficial way to get that energy out, it ends up making them a little bit more open to the challenges of any given day,” says Horne. “In my experience, it leads to less dysregulation and better ability to pay attention.”
Setting Personal GoalsShortly following admission, our students complete a fitness and nutritional assessment to gauge which healthy habits they want to work on developing. Then, we help students incorporate fitness goals into their individualized treatment plans. For some students, this may look like training to run a 5k off-campus by building confidence and endurance or trying a new activity without being overly self-critical of their performance. After every recreation activity, we offer group processing to discuss what issues may have been brought up and things that teens are proud of themselves for accomplishing. “One of the cool things about setting fitness goals is that teens often don’t realize that they are really setting therapeutic goals,” describes Horne. “Recreation therapy uses metaphors for them to have a learning experience when they don’t even know that they’re practicing the skills they’ve talked about in therapy.” This experiential approach helps motivate teens to become active participants in their therapeutic process, as they benefit from exploring their thoughts and behaviors in informal settings.
Equinox RTC Can HelpEquinox is a residential treatment center that helps boys ages 14-18 who struggle with depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and addictive behaviors. Equinox offers a unique treatment program designed to fit each individual’s specific needs. This treatment center has a supportive environment that helps students heal from the inside-out. Students develop a healthy sense of social and emotional awareness and learn how to incorporate good habits into their daily lives. Equinox enforces a positive change in the lives of young men and offers them a fresh start at a happy and healthy future. We can help your family today! Contact us at 877-279-8925.
Kyle received his Ph.D. in Marriage and Family Therapy from Texas Tech University. As a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Kyle has worked in a variety of clinical settings over the last seventeen years. His career has focused on treating both boys and girls, with specialization in trauma, processing difficulties, eating disorders, depression, anxiety, OCD and difficult family systems.