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Nature-Based Recreational Therapy for Military Service Members: A Strengths Approach

Brent L. Hawkins, Jasmine A. Townsend, Barry A. Garst


Nature-based interventions have long been used as a strengths-based approach to aid in positive human development. The use of these interventions is underpinned by a strong knowledge base; however, little information exists with regard to the use of nature-based recreation therapy (RT) interventions as a strengths-based approach for working with military service members. This article provides an overview of typical treatment options for injured service members, explores the theoretical and conceptual foundations surrounding nature-based programming, reviews existing research literature on the use of nature with veterans, and offers a conceptual model for nature-based RT interventions for military service members. Recommendations and implications for practice and research are discussed.


nature-based interventions; strengths-based interventions; military service members; nature-based recreational therapy

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