Geriatric Rehabilitation Group Activities

Geriatric rehabilitation group activities are important components in promoting the physical and mental health of elderly patients. They function to foster not only confidence and acumen in a variety of daily tasks ranging from eating to walking but also to develop important social relationships that provide a framework of peer and professional support. The advantage of group rehabilitation activities is that they encourage bonds among geriatric patients while giving each patient a frame of reference for his progress.

  1. Cooking

    • Maintaining and improving patients' cooking skills is an important issue that geriatric rehabilitation programs must address. As patients age, their ability to cook for themselves sometimes becomes more difficult. Simple tasks such as opening a can or stirring a batter can present difficulties. One way to improve their skills is to hold a group cooking class. The class should cover a number of cooking areas such as geriatric-friendly recipes as well as technical cooking skills such as can and bottle opening. To develop hand strength, distribute a stress relieving ball or sack to each geriatric patient to use to increase strength in their hand muscles.

    Gardening

    • Gardening sessions are good sources of pride, custodianship, and community for groups of geriatric patients. Gardening will aid in improving physical skills and promote mental health. Gardening sessions should focus on basic elements of gardening such as fertilizing, planting, weeding, and watering. Assigning each patient responsibilities for the care of a certain section of the garden or certain types of plants is a good way to encourage participation. This also gives them responsibility for caring for a living thing, imbuing them with confidence and gratification. You can also establish rotating responsibilities that place each patient in charge of a new gardening task each week, for example.

    Water Aerobics

    • Water aerobics is a fun, low-impact way to enhance the physical rehabilitation of geriatrics. The advantage of water aerobics is that it can usually accommodate large groups while promoting peace of body and mind. Because some rehabilitation centers and homes may not have the proper facilities, administrators should contact local YMCAs, fitness centers, universities, or clubs for pool access. Indoor pool facilities may be advisable because the elderly can use them year-round without worrying about harmful sun exposure.

    Games

    • Group games are excellent ways to challenge the minds of geriatric patients. Card games such as bridge and board games such as dominoes sharpen mental acuity while promoting teamwork. To ensure that every member of the group gets to play games they enjoy or are proficient at, designate certain days for certain games. You can also use games that improve physical functioning such as shuffleboard or croquet.

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