Can Kayaking Help in My Recovery?

When looking at possible treatment programs for addiction to alcohol and drugs, you will likely note that there are more adventure-based therapies and recreational activities integrated into rehabs than ever before. The reason is simple: adventure therapy and outdoor activities as a whole have been found to help those in addiction treatment bridge gaps in talk therapy for clients’ return to complete health and well-being. Experiential therapies also provide exploration of healthier pursuits as part of a sober lifestyle. Nextep in Ft. Myers Florida utilizes many different experiential therapeutic methods to help individuals break free from their addiction and improve the quality of their lives, kayaking as part of recreational therapy is just one of them.

Why is Kayaking part of addiction treatment?

Outdoor activities like Kayaking are proven to help clients develop self-awareness and self-esteem. They provide people with peaceful surroundings in which to temporarily retreat from daily distractions, clear their minds, reflect on their lives, think about personal habits and focus on motivations. In essence, outdoor pursuits provide clients with the landscape and means on which to develop the foundation of a new, healthier life.

Kayaking is one of the most universally enjoyed outdoor activities, and is suitable for clients of all ages and fitness levels. Clients, especially those with co-occurring disorders, can use kayaking to open doors to recovery that talk therapy may not be able to access.
Of course, going on a kayak is never the only means by which lasting recovery can be gained. Traditional talk therapies, such as individual counseling and group therapy, accompany this adventure-based pursuit toward optimum exploration of issues, for recovery from substance abuse and toward best management of co-occurring disorders.

How can Kayaking help in my recovery?

Challenges that exist when dealing with nature can be seen as growth mechanisms toward making fundamental changes in clients’ lives. Kayaking has long been utilized as a pursuit to supplement addiction treatment because of how the activity helps individuals connect with nature while developing teamwork, a healthier approach to control, responsibility for one’s own actions, understanding of consequences and other attributes needed to maintain strength and mindfulness in recovery.
Kayaking also helps clients develop self-esteem and increases feelings of joy and pleasure, all things once lost to substance abuse. When navigating the water and the challenges it presents, clients are provided opportunities to deal with situations that they later draw upon in other therapy sessions for greater self-discovery.
While outdoors, clients experience change, personal empowerment and emotional growth. Because they are very focused on the activity itself when kayaking, rather than whether or not kayaking is therapeutic, clients become unguarded and open to their own feelings and those of others. Greater authenticity develops and leads to deeper conversations after their outdoor experience, allowing them to reflect upon their behaviors, thoughts and emotions of the journey and their past. This makes clients more objective in their own healing and helps them become more authentically self-aware.
Finally, enjoyment of nature while kayaking is a healthy pursuit that can be enjoyed almost anywhere as part of a clean, sober lifestyle. It’s a new hobby open for discovery by clients for later use to alleviate anxiety and other obstacles to ongoing recovery. For clients of addiction rehabilitation, this pursuit can provide a much-needed healthy and physically productive pastime for filling time they would have previously filled by seeking, gaining and using their substance of choice.

Kayaking as Part of Rehabilitation at Nextep in Ft. Myers, FL

In picturesque Ft. Myers, Florida, Nextep provides unparalleled access to kayaking opportunities for personal enjoyment and growth in rehab. If you or someone you love is interested in gaining recovery from addiction to drugs and alcohol while developing new interests and means of healthier living, call  Nextep today at 844-639-8371 for more information about available programs.
Scroll to Top