Reminiscence therapy (RemT) promotes maintenance of memories associated with a meaningful aspect of an in-dividual’s life and is often used with individuals with dementia. For many people, attendance and participation in sports is a significant part of their life’s narrative. This study evaluated a sport-based RemT program using collegiate football memories with residents with dementia in an assisted living facility in the immediate geographical area of a university football program (Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina). Interviews, structured observations, and measures of cognition and quality of life were conducted to evaluate the program’s impact. Statistically significant improvements in quality of life were measured; however, no changes in cognition were evident. Qualitative results indicated the program created opportunities for learning and sharing of social memories related to sport, establishment of group culture and traditions, and positive behavioral change. Recreational therapists can use this study as a basis to implement their own sport-based RemT program.
Author Brent L. Hawkins, Gregory Ramshaw, Taylor Hooker, Katie Walker
Volume Vol. 54, No. 1 (2020)