What is a play therapist?
Play Therapists are clinical practitioners and as such they undertake extensive training, supervision and personal therapy. Training courses are all postgraduate, taking a minimum of 2 years to complete. Play therapists are often also trained in psychotherapy and use play as the language by which they communicate with children. They use approaches, interventions, media and activities that are appropriate to the developmental stage of the client, which enable the child to communicate non-verbally, symbolically, and in an action-oriented manner.
The development of a therapeutic relationship is central to their work. Play therapists who have also trained in psychotherapy (either prior to or as part of their play therapy training, minimum of 3 years) are qualified to work with children across the spectrum of need including those with significant clinical issues such as attachment disorders and experiences of abuse.
Play Therapists utilise play as a means of preventing or treating psychosocial disorders, and enabling children to achieve optimum growth and development.