Content » Vol 52, Issue 5

Original report

Level of physical activity is positively correlated with perceived impact on life 12 months after stroke: A cross-sectional study

Peta Cook, Katharina S. Sunnerhagen, Hanna C. Persson
Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, 41345 Gothenburg, Sweden. E-mail:
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2667


Objectives: To examine the relationship between, and impact of, level of physical activity and perceived impact on life at 12 months post-stroke.
Design: Cross-sectional study.
Subjects: A total of 73 participants with first-time stroke included in the Stroke Arm Longitudinal study at the University of Gothenburg (SALGOT study), Sweden.
Methods: Perceived impact of stroke was assessed with the Stroke Impact Scale and level of physical activity was assessed with the Saltin-Grimby Physical Activity Scale at 12 months post-stroke. Data were presented with descriptive and logistic regression analyses.
Results: The physically active group perceived their strength, emotion, mobility, participation and overall stroke recovery as significantly less problematic compared with the inactive group. Being physically active contributed to higher scores in the Strength domain (odds ratio, OR 7. 89) and in the Stroke Recovery domain (OR 18. 55). In the Participation domain being physically active (OR 8. 01) and independent (OR 0. 162) contributed to higher scores.
Conclusion: A positive correlation was found between level of physical activity at 12 months post-stroke and levels of strength, participation and stroke recovery.

Lay Abstract

It is common for stroke survivors to experience long-term symptoms. This study investigated individuals’ perceptions of how stroke symptoms impact on their lives, and examined the connection between this and their level of physical activity 12 months after stroke. A total of 73 stroke survivors completed 2 questionnaires; about their level of physical activity, and their perception of how their life is impacted by stroke. The results showed that a higher level of physical activity at 12 months after stroke was linked to stroke survivors perceiving that their strength, participation in life and overall recovery from stroke was better. This study highlights the importance of being physically active even long-term after stroke, as this can help to optimize the perception of recovery and reduce the impact of stroke on life.


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