How Much Do Recreational Therapists Make in 2021 (including Starting Salary)

Stan T.Career, SalaryLeave a Comment

Annual Salary, Salary Range, and Highest Paying States and Industries

Recreational Therapists

Recreational Therapists plan, direct, or coordinate medically-approved recreation programs for patients in hospitals, nursing homes, or other institutions. Activities include sports, trips, dramatics, social activities, and crafts. May assess a patient condition and recommend appropriate recreational activity.

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Table of contents
  1. Average salary
  2. Starting salary
  3. Salary rank
  4. Salary range
  5. Highest paying states
  6. Highest paying industries

Average salary

Annual salary
$51260 per year
Hourly wage
$25 per hour

Starting salary

Entry-level annual salary
$31,450 to $37,570 per year
Entry-level hourly wage
$15 to $18 per hour

Entry-level Recreational Therapists with little to no experience can expect to make anywhere between $31,450 to $37,570 per year or $15 to $18 per hour. Similar to any other job, their salary will increase as they gain experience.

Salary rank

Salary rank

We wanted to make it easy for our readers to compare the salary of Recreational Therapists to all the other careers out there. So we created Salary Rank. We compared the salary of all careers then we gave them a rank of A, B, C, or D depending on where their average salary sit in comparison to other careers.

Salary range

Level Hourly Annual
Highest (Top 10%) $38 $79,250
Senior (Top 25%) $30 $62,440
Middle (Mid 50%) $23 $47,710
Junior (Bottom 25%) $18 $37,570
No experience (Bottom 10%) $15 $31,450

Highest paying states

State Hourly Annual
DC $38 $78,630
CA $37 $77,960
CT $30 $61,570
NJ $29 $61,090
OR $28 $58,420
NY $28 $58,010
AR $26 $54,600
NH $26 $54,020
IA $26 $53,970
MA $25 $52,390

Another simple way to increase your salary as a Recreational Therapist is to move to a higher paying state. However moving to a higher paying state like DC doesn’t guarantee that you will make more because the expenses at DC might be much higher than where you are currently living at right now.

According to BLS, the highest paid Recreational Therapists are in the states of DC, CA, CT, NJ and OR.

Highest paying industries

Salary by industry Annual Hourly
Federal Executive Branch $77060 $37.05
Child Day Care Services $61450 $29.54
Management of Companies and Enterprises $60880 $29.27
Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools $59080 $28.41
State Government $57360 $27.58
Elementary and Secondary Schools $55450 $26.66
Psychiatric and Substance Abuse Hospitals $54870 $26.38
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals $54810 $26.35
Specialty Hospitals $54720 $26.31
Community Food and Housing, and Emergency and Other Relief Services $54560 $26.23
Other Residential Care Facilities $53250 $25.60
Offices of Other Health Practitioners $53100 $25.53
Offices of Physicians $53000 $25.48
Home Health Care Services $52680 $25.33
Social Advocacy Organizations $50760 $24.41
Outpatient Care Centers $49990 $24.03
Local Government $49910 $24.00
Residential Intellectual and Developmental Disability, Mental Health, and Substance Abuse Facilities $49320 $23.71
Nursing Care Facilities (Skilled Nursing Facilities) $45480 $21.87
Continuing Care Retirement Communities and Assisted Living Facilities for the Elderly $42130 $20.26
Vocational Rehabilitation Services $40610 $19.52
Individual and Family Services $39030 $18.76

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