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Try Walking to Ease Joint Pain

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May is Arthritis Month. Despite the known benefits of physical activity to help manage arthritis, adults with arthritis are less active than adults without arthritis. Walking is low impact on joints, can be done almost anywhere and doesn't require special equipment or a gym membership. A recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed that, in all 50 states, more than 50% of adults with arthritis walked less than 90 minutes per week. The age-adjusted percentage of adults with arthritis walking less than 90 minutes per week ranged from a low of 58.8% in Maine to a high of 78.5% in Tennessee [see map below]. In 8 states, the percentage of adults with arthritis walking less than 90 minutes/week was greater than 70.8%.

This report does have some good news. About 1 in 5 adults with arthritis met physical activity guidelines for aerobic activity by walking at least 150 minutes per week. The age-adjusted percentage of adults with arthritis meeting aerobic activity guidelines ranged from a low of 16.3% in Tennessee to a high of 28.6% in Wyoming.

These data demonstrate that a considerable number of adults with arthritis are not getting the benefits of walking, which has been shown to reduce pain and stiffness, improve physical function, mood, and quality-of-life.

Walk with Ease is an evidence-based, 6 week walking program offered through the Arthritis Foundation. Walk with Ease can be done as a group program lead by a trained leader or it can be done by an individual using the workbook at their own pace. For adults with arthritis that would like to start a walking program, they can find more information about Walk With Ease.

Age-adjusted percentage of walking less than 90 minutes per week among adults with arthritis by state. Alabama 73.2%, Alaska 62.7%, Arizona 67.1%, Arkansas 70.3%, California 61.3%, Colorado 63.1%, Connecticut 65.4%, Delaware 74.6%, District of Columbia 61.4%, Florida 66.3%, Georgia 66.8%, Hawaii 64.3%, Idaho 66.7%, Illinois 62.3%, Indiana 70.2%, Iowa 71.5%, Kansas 72.0%, Kentucky 68.4%, Louisiana 75.2%, Maine 68.9%, Maryland 68.9%, Massachusetts 67.6%, Michigan 65.6%, Minnesota 65.1%, Mississippi 72.7%, Missouri 71.6%, Montana 66.4%, Nebraska 68.9%, Nevada 60.4%, New Hampshire 65.1%, New Jersey 63.8%, New Mexico 64.1%, New York 66.0%, North Carolina 68.9%, North Dakota 63.9%, Ohio 66.1%, Oklahoma 72.7%, Oregon 61.4%, Pennsylvania 66.9%, Rhode Island 65.5%, South Carolina 66.6%, South Dakota 68.3%, Tennessee 78.4%, Texas 69.0%, Utah 65.8%, Vermont 61.2%, Virginia 70.6%, Washington 62.2%, West Virginia 73.5%, Wisconsin 61.0%, Wyoming 63.2%.
 

More Information

  • Page last reviewed: May 27, 2013
  • Page last updated: May 27, 2013
  • Content source:
    • Office of the Associate Director for Communication, Digital Media Branch, Division of Public Affairs
    • Page maintained by: Office of the Associate Director for Communication, Digital Media Branch, Division of Public Affairs
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