All Kinds of News for July 11, 2018
This summer students at Equinox RTC have been exploring the various outdoor recreational opportunities that the Blue Ridge mountains of Western North Carolina have to offer. The adventure therapy program provides opportunities to gain proficiency in a wide range of outdoor recreation skills including rock climbing, canoeing and kayaking, white water rafting, stand-up paddle boarding, hiking, biking and camping. Students participate in weekly experiential activities that are seamlessly integrated into their therapeutic experience. In doing so, students are able to transfer their lessons learned, skills gained, and interpersonal experiences during outdoor recreational activities to their therapeutic journey, personal goals, and interests.
Currently, the Equinox RTC mountain biking program is thriving. Students are in the process of building an on-campus pump track and skills areas to practice and build upon their foundational skills such as balancing on uneven terrain, transferring weight while riding, and navigating over small jumps and hills safely. In addition to the on-campus activities, students have been going off-campus to local areas like Dupont State Forest and Bent Creek to bike. For fly fishing, students have been getting out on the river to practice their techniques. Fly fishing is a great way for students to practice mindfulness and grounding techniques for emotional regulation. The small Equinox kayak fleet is also growing. Students and staff have taken the kayaks out on fishing trips and to coast along the French Broad River taking in the scenery.
The students also participate in community service each week, volunteering at community farms and gardens, planning activities for the elderly, working with our local humane society, and helping to maintain and beautify our campus. Learning to give back and to be empathetic is crucial to the growth of a young adult. Recent community service projects have included helping at Manna Food Bank in Asheville and with the Carolina Mountain Club. At the Carolina Mountain Club, students worked on part of the Mountain to Sea Trail and learned how to use a Pulaski and McLeod. These are both tools they are starting to use on campus to build a pump track and skills area for our mountain bikes.
Outdoor challenges and community service projects provide an excellent medium for building self-esteem and strong relationships. The goal is for all students to leave Equinox RTC with healthy, lifelong interests and skills. As students develop and learn alongside one another, they form trusting, caring relationships within peer groups and beyond. Equinox RTC Recreational Therapy Director Natalie Stark comments, “These activities give students the opportunity to work on trust, emotional regulation, and pushing students outside of their comfort zones.”
About Equinox RTC
Equinox is a leading residential treatment center for boys ages 14-18. Equinox is unique in its focus on Trauma, Loss and Attachment, providing clinically intensive treatment for young men struggling with anxiety, depression, OCD, ASD, learning disabilities, and other emotional and behavioral needs. Equinox offers a combination of clinically sophisticated support with a whole child approach including adventure therapy, integrated Cross-Fit program, and a whole foods diet. Equinox provides a fully accredited school, with broad course selections taught by licensed teachers in a college-preparatory environment.