Barriers associated with exercise and community access for individuals with stroke

J Rehabil Res Dev. 2008;45(2):315-22. doi: 10.1682/jrrd.2007.02.0042.


Increasing participation in physical activity among people with stroke continues to be a major challenge for healthcare professionals. We administered a survey to a group of 83 adults with unilateral stroke (mean age = 54.2 yr) to determine their perceived barriers to exercise. The five most common barriers in rank order were (1) cost of the program (61%), (2) lack of awareness of a fitness center in the area (57%), (3) no means of transportation to a fitness center (57%), (4) no knowledge of how to exercise (46%), and (5) no knowledge of where to exercise (44%). The least common barriers were (1) lack of interest (16%), (2) lack of time (11%), and (3) concern that exercise would worsen their condition (1%). People with stroke reported several barriers that prevented or reduced their participation in exercise. Healthcare professionals must identify and remove these barriers to promote greater participation in exercise among people with stroke.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Architectural Accessibility
  • Disability Evaluation
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Exercise / psychology
  • Female
  • Health Services Accessibility*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Stroke / physiopathology
  • Stroke / psychology
  • Stroke Rehabilitation*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires