Physical Activity Types and Programs Recommended by Primary Care Providers Treating Adults With Arthritis, DocStyles 2018

Dana Guglielmo, MPH; Kristina A. Theis, PhD; Louise B. Murphy, PhD; Michael A. Boring, MS; Charles G. Helmick, MD; John D. Omura, MD; Erica L. Odom, DrPH; Lindsey M. Duca, PhD; Janet B. Croft, PhD


Prev Chronic Dis. 2021;18(10):e92 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Primary care providers (PCPs) can offer counseling to adults with arthritis on physical activity, which can reduce pain and improve physical function, mental health, and numerous other health outcomes. We analyzed cross-sectional 2018 DocStyles data for 1,366 PCPs who reported they always or sometimes recommend physical activity to adults with arthritis. Most PCPs sampled (88.2%) recommended walking, swimming, or cycling; 65.5% did not recommend any evidence-based, arthritis-appropriate physical activity programs recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Opportunities exist for public health awareness campaigns to educate PCPs about evidence-based physical activity programs proven to optimize health for adults with arthritis when more than counseling is needed.