Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

The Role of Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Learn more about how activities and therapies in residential rehab can increase your chances of success in treatment.

Incorporating Healing Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

At Mile High Recovery Center (MHRC), we are dedicated to providing comprehensive addiction and mental health treatment in Denver, Colorado.
Our mission is to support you on your lifelong journey to recovery, offering a safe and supportive environment where you can build a meaningful and purposeful life. One way we do this is incorporating healing activities and therapies in residential rehab.
Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Integrating Evidence-Based Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Using both evidence-based and holistic activities and therapies in residential rehab is crucial in promoting well-being.
While therapy helps to address the root causes and underlying issues of addiction, activities such as meditation and art therapy can aid in physical, mental, and emotional healing.
These therapies work in tandem to promote a balanced and integrated approach to recovery.

How Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab Enhance Recovery

Residential rehab programs offer a structured and immersive approach to addiction recovery. These programs require clients to live at the facility full-time. This allows for an uninterrupted focus on the healing process.
This immersive environment is designed to provide continuous support and a safe space where clients can work on overcoming addiction without external distractions or triggers.
In a residential rehab program, the daily schedule is meticulously planned. This structure includes a variety of activities and therapies in residential rehab that are tailored to meet each person’s specific needs.

Goals of Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

The goal is to create a balanced routine that helps clients develop healthy habits and coping mechanisms. By living at the facility, clients can fully immerse themselves in the recovery process and benefit from a consistent and supportive environment.

What is Residential Rehabilitation?

Residential rehab stands apart from other treatment options, such as outpatient programs or partial hospitalization programs. Here’s how:

Level of Support

In an outpatient program, clients attend therapy sessions and activities for several hours a day or week but return home afterward. This setup can be challenging if a person’s home environment is not conducive to recovery.
In contrast, residential rehab offers 24/7 support from a team of professionals, including doctors, therapists, and support staff. This continuous care is crucial for addressing any physical or emotional issues that arise during the recovery journey.
Having constant access to professional help ensures that clients receive timely interventions and support whenever needed.

Community Integration

While other treatment modalities may also incorporate group therapy, residential rehab provides a more immersive and community-oriented experience. Living with other people in recovery allows for the formation of strong bonds and support systems.
Clients can:
  • Learn from others’ experiences
  • Offer and receive support
  • Build meaningful relationships that continue after completing the program


The structured nature of residential rehab promotes accountability. With a consistent daily schedule and expectations set by the staff, clients are responsible for taking part fully in their recovery journey.
This sense of responsibility can be empowering and help clients develop discipline and commitment to maintaining sobriety.
Living at the facility also removes temptations and distractions that may lead to relapse. Clients have few opportunities to engage in substance use or other unhealthy behaviors when surrounded by a supportive and sober environment.

The Role of Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

At Mile High Recovery Center, our approach to healing is comprehensive and holistic. We integrate a variety of activities and therapies in residential rehab to ensure every aspect of a person’s well-being is addressed, including:
  • Physical health
  • Emotional wellness 
  • Spiritual dimensions
This provides a thorough and balanced path to recovery.

Physical Aspects

Regular physical activity helps restore the body and provides a foundation for well-being. Activities such as yoga, fitness classes, and outdoor adventures like hiking and camping are part of our program.
These activities:
  • Improve strength and stamina
  • Reduce stress and anxiety
  • Increase self-esteem and confidence
  • Promote healthy habits
Adventure therapy, in particular, plays a significant role in promoting physical health. Engaging in challenging outdoor activities helps rebuild physical fitness while also providing an outlet for stress and anxiety.

Emotional Aspects

Rehab is not just about detoxing and abstaining from substance use. It’s also about addressing underlying emotional issues that may have contributed to addiction.
Our therapy sessions focus on exploring these emotions in a safe and supportive environment. We offer various types of therapy, including:
  • Individual therapy: Where clients can discuss personal challenges and develop coping strategies.
  • Group therapy: Provides peer support and helps build healthy relationships.
  • Family therapy: Aids in healing damaged relationships and rebuilding trust with loved ones.
  • Creative therapy: Activities such as art, music, and writing can be powerful tools for expressing and processing emotions.

Spiritual Aspects

Our program incorporates spiritual practices to help people reconnect with their inner selves and find meaning and purpose in life.
These practices may include:
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness exercises
  • Reflection activities
We also encourage participation in 12-Step programs or other support groups if desired. These groups often have a mentorship aspect that can provide a sense of guidance and accountability.1

Evidence-Based Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

To address the complex nature of addiction, our program uses evidence-based activities and therapies in residential rehab. These therapies have been scientifically proven to be effective.2
One of the most commonly used therapies is cognitive-behavioral therapy.

Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab: CBT

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) focuses on identifying and changing negative thought patterns and behaviors that contribute to addiction. CBT helps people understand the relationship between their thoughts, feelings, and actions.
By recognizing and altering these patterns, clients can develop healthier coping strategies.
Here’s a look at how CBT works:

Identifying Negative Thoughts

The first step in CBT involves identifying distorted or unhelpful thoughts that contribute to addictive behaviors and mental health issues. This process often includes keeping a thought diary to track negative thoughts and their triggers.

Challenging Negative Thoughts

Once these thoughts are identified, clients work with a therapist to challenge and reframe them into more positive and realistic ones.
This involves:
  • Questioning the evidence for and against these thoughts
  • Examining their validity
  • Considering alternative perspectives

Behavioral Activation

CBT also involves developing practical skills to change behaviors. This includes behavioral activation, which encourages people to engage in positive activities that improve mood and reduce depressive symptoms.
This can be particularly effective in overcoming the inactivity and withdrawal that often accompany addiction.

Exposure Therapy

For those struggling with anxiety disorders or PTSD, exposure therapy can be an integral part of CBT. This technique involves gradually and systematically exposing clients to the feared object or context without any danger to diminish the power of the fear.

Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab: DBT

Dialectical behavioral therapy, or DBT, combines elements of CBT with mindfulness-based strategies to help people:
  • Regulate emotions
  • Tolerate distress
  • Improve relationships
It was originally developed to treat borderline personality disorder but has since been found effective in treating a range of mental health issues. The core components of DBT include:


DBT teaches mindfulness skills to help people stay present and fully experience their emotions without judgment. This practice helps reduce impulsivity and increase self-awareness. It involves learning to observe thoughts and feelings without becoming overwhelmed by them.

Distress Tolerance

This component focuses on building resilience and coping strategies for dealing with crisis situations without resorting to harmful behaviors. Techniques such as distraction, self-soothing, and improving the moment are used to endure and survive crises without making them worse.

Emotional Regulation

DBT provides tools to manage and regulate intense emotions. By understanding and controlling emotional responses, people can reduce mood swings and maintain stability.
Skills in this module include:
  • Identifying and labeling emotions
  • Increasing positive emotional events
  • Reducing vulnerability to negative emotions

Interpersonal Effectiveness

This involves learning how to communicate more effectively and maintain healthier relationships. Skills taught in this area help people assert their needs while maintaining respect for others.
These include strategies for:
  • Asking for what they need
  • Saying no
  • Coping with interpersonal conflict

Validation and Acceptance

Therapists help clients acknowledge and accept their feelings and behaviors without judgment. This can reduce the shame and self-criticism that often accompany addiction and mental health issues.
The integration of CBT and DBT into our residential rehab programs ensures a comprehensive approach to treatment. These therapies are often complemented by other activities and therapies in residential rehab to address all aspects of well-being.

Holistic Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Holistic activities and therapies in residential rehab focus on treating the whole person—mind, body, and spirit—rather than just addressing the symptoms of addiction.
Our residential rehab programs incorporate regular sessions of meditation and mindfulness, making these practices a consistent part of your daily routine. This helps clients develop and maintain healthy habits that support long-term recovery.


Meditation is a practice that cultivates mental clarity and deep relaxation. It involves techniques that help people focus their mind and achieve a state of inner peace.
Common types of meditation include:
  • Mindfulness meditation: This practice involves observing thoughts and feelings without judgment, helping people stay present and fully engaged in the moment. It can enhance self-awareness and reduce stress.3
  • Guided meditation: In guided meditation, a facilitator leads clients through visualizations and relaxation techniques. This helps them form mental images of calming places or situations. This method is particularly useful for reducing anxiety and promoting relaxation.

Benefits of Meditation

The benefits of meditation include:
  • Stress reduction: Lowers cortisol levels, promoting a state of calm and relaxation
  • Improved focus and concentration: Enhances one’s ability to stay committed to recovery goals
  • Emotional health: Alleviates symptoms of anxiety and depression, fostering a more positive outlook
  • Self-awareness: Increases understanding and management of thoughts and behaviors

Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab: Mindfulness Practices

Mindfulness practices are essential for developing a non-judgmental awareness of present experiences, including:
  • Thoughts
  • Emotions
  • Physical sensations
These practices are a vital part of managing stress and emotional triggers during recovery.

Types of Mindfulness Practices

Common types of mindfulness practices include:
  • Mindful breathing: This practice involves focusing on one’s breath, helping anchor the mind and calm the nervous system. It is a simple yet powerful tool for managing stress.
  • Body scan: The body scan technique involves systematically focusing on different parts of the body, noticing sensations without judgment. This practice can help release physical tension and promote relaxation.
  • Mindful eating: Mindful eating encourages people to pay attention to the taste, texture, and experience of eating, fostering a deeper appreciation and awareness of food. It can help develop healthier eating habits and improve digestion.

Benefits of Mindfulness

The benefits of mindfulness include:
  • Reduced stress and anxiety: Leads to a more balanced and peaceful state of mind.
  • Enhanced emotional regulation: Allows people to respond to difficult situations with greater calm and clarity.
  • Improved sleep quality: Promotes relaxation and reduces mental chatter that can interfere with rest.
  • Increased self-compassion: Fosters acceptance and self-compassion, essential for personal growth and recovery.

Creative Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Creative activities and therapies in residential rehab provide opportunities to explore personal narratives and experiences creatively. This self-exploration can lead to valuable insights and a deeper understanding of a person’s journey. This can help identify and address the root causes of addiction.

Art Therapy

Art therapy uses the creative process of making art to improve and enhance physical, mental, and emotional well-being. This form of therapy allows people to express feelings that might be difficult to articulate with words.4
Clients can explore their emotions in a non-verbal way through activities like:
  • Drawing
  • Painting
  • Sculpting

Benefits of Art Therapy

The benefits of art therapy include:
  • Facilitates self-expression: Creating art can help people express complex emotions and thoughts that are challenging to verbalize. This can be particularly beneficial if they struggle to communicate their feelings through traditional talk therapy.
  • Promotes emotional processing: The act of making art provides a safe space to explore and process difficult emotions. This helps people understand and manage them more effectively.
  • Exploration of personal narratives: Art therapy encourages people to reflect on their personal experiences and stories. This exploration can lead to greater self-awareness and insights into the underlying issues contributing to addiction.

What to Expect from Art Therapy Sessions

In art therapy sessions, clients work with a trained art therapist who guides them through various creative activities. These sessions are not about creating “good” art but about using the creative process to explore their inner world.
The therapist helps clients interpret their creations and connects them to emotions and experiences.

Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab: Music Therapy

Music therapy involves using music to address emotional, cognitive, and social needs. It can include:
  • Listening to music
  • Playing instruments
  • Singing
  • Composing music
This therapy leverages the therapeutic effects of music to help people process emotions and enhance mental health.

Benefits of Music Therapy

The benefits of music therapy include:
  • Emotional expression: Music provides a powerful outlet for expressing emotions. Whether creating or listening to music, it can help people articulate feelings that are hard to express in words.
  • Stress reduction: Music has a calming effect on the mind and body, reducing stress and promoting relaxation. It can also help regulate emotions, particularly in times of high anxiety or strong feelings.
  • Social connection: Making music with others can foster a sense of belonging and connection.

What to Expect from Music Therapy Sessions

During music therapy sessions, a therapist guides clients through activities tailored to their needs and preferences. These sessions may involve:
  • Playing instruments
  • Singing
  • Listening to specific types of music to evoke particular emotional responses
The therapist uses these musical experiences to help clients explore their emotions and work through challenges related to addiction.

Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab: Outdoor and Adventure Therapy

These therapies harness the healing power of nature and physical challenges to foster recovery. Our outdoor and adventure therapy programs are meticulously designed to maximize therapeutic benefits.
Each activity aligns with a client’s treatment goals. This ensures a cohesive and supportive recovery journey.


Hiking is a staple of our outdoor activities and therapies in residential rehab. This activity involves guided treks through scenic natural landscapes, providing both physical exercise and mental relaxation.
Hiking helps to:
  • Improve cardiovascular health
  • Strengthen muscles
  • Boost fitness
The repetitive motion of walking can also induce a meditative state. This aids in stress reduction and mental clarity.

Wilderness Therapy

Wilderness therapy involves extended stays in natural settings, where clients take part in activities like:
  • Camping
  • Navigation
  • Survival skills training
The goal is to disconnect from everyday life and immerse yourself in nature. This immersion encourages self-reliance, resilience, and personal growth. Wilderness therapy helps people break away from negative patterns and build new, healthier habits.

Experiential Activities

Experiential activities include rock climbing, kayaking, and team-building exercises. These activities:
  • Challenge people both physically and mentally
  • Push clients to overcome fears and develop new skills.
  • Promote problem-solving
  • Enhance communication
  • Build teamwork
Engaging in these activities helps people gain confidence and a sense of accomplishment.

Benefits of Outdoor Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Doing activities and therapies in residential rehab can help people break down barriers and build new relationships.
Outdoor and adventure therapy offers unique therapeutic benefits, such as:

Nature Immersion

Spending time in nature has significant therapeutic benefits. Nature immersion:
  • Reduces stress
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Improves mood
Being in a natural environment allows people to focus on the present moment and reflect on their recovery journey. The calming effects of nature provide a stark contrast to the chaos often associated with addiction, creating a space for peace and contemplation.

Physical Activity

Outdoor and adventure therapy incorporates physical activity, which has been proven to have positive effects on mental health. Exercise releases endorphins, the “feel-good” chemicals in the brain, which can help alleviate depression and anxiety.5

Overcoming Challenges

Outdoor and adventure therapy often involves facing and overcoming physical and mental challenges. Whether it’s reaching the top of a hike or successfully navigating a river, these accomplishments build resilience and self-efficacy.
Overcoming challenges in a therapeutic setting helps people develop confidence in their ability to handle difficult situations. This resilience and confidence are essential for maintaining sobriety and navigating the complexities of life.

Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab: Nurturing the Mind-Body-Spirit Connection

Each aspect of a person—mental, physical, and spiritual—affects the others, forming a dynamic interplay that impacts overall health:
  • Mental health shapes thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. It influences how people handle stress and interact with the world.
  • Physical health impacts energy levels, mood, and capacity to engage in everyday activities.
  • Spiritual health involves finding meaning and purpose, fostering inner peace, and building resilience
By addressing all three aspects, we create a comprehensive and balanced recovery process that supports lasting change.

Nurturing the Mind through Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

At Mile High Recovery Center, we offer a range of therapies designed to help people develop healthier thought patterns and emotional stability.
Techniques like CBT and mindfulness practices are employed to:
  • Manage stress
  • Reduce the risk of relapse
  • Promote a positive outlook on life
Our educational workshops provide valuable information on coping strategies and the science of addiction. Our goal is to empower clients with the knowledge to navigate their recovery journey effectively.

Nurturing the Body Through Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Our programs incorporate regular physical activity, proper nutrition, and holistic therapies to help clients:
  • Build strength
  • Improve fitness
  • Enhance mood
Activities such as yoga, hiking, and fitness classes promote cardiovascular health. Nutritional guidance ensures the body receives the necessary nutrients for recovery, while holistic therapies like massage and acupuncture alleviate physical stress and support the body’s natural healing processes.

Nurturing the Spirit through Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Spiritual well-being is integral to achieving a balanced and fulfilling recovery. At Mile High Recovery Center, we offer activities and therapies designed to help clients connect with their inner selves and find meaning and purpose.
Meditation practices foster spiritual growth by providing a sense of peace and reducing stress. Spiritual counseling offers guidance as clients explore their beliefs and values, helping them find direction and purpose.
Community involvement and group activities create a sense of belonging and support, reinforcing the commitment to recovery.
Activities and Therapies in Residential Rehab

Empowering Recovery Through Comprehensive Care

At Mile High Recovery Center, we provide a diverse range of activities and therapies in residential rehab designed to support holistic healing and sustainable recovery.
From education and physical wellness to spiritual growth and community involvement, our programs cater to all aspects of a person, promoting a well-rounded and empowered recovery journey.
We believe that by nurturing the body, mind, and spirit, everyone can achieve long-lasting sobriety and live a fulfilling life.

Contact Mile High Recovery Center Today

Exploring residential rehab at Mile High Recovery Center is the first step on a transformative journey toward holistic healing and sustainable recovery.
Our compassionate and professional team is dedicated to providing personalized care and support, helping you achieve your goals for a better tomorrow.
We invite you to join our community and take the first step toward a fulfilling recovery journey. Come and explore the possibilities at Mile High Recovery Center today.

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Reach Out Today to See How Mile High Recovery Center Can Help You Heal

If you or a loved one are ready to regain autonomy over your lives and well-being, recovery starts here. Let us guide you toward sustainable wellness and sobriety through our personalized treatment plans tailored to your unique needs and experiences. We look forward to hearing from you!