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Stroke Research and Treatment
Volume 2014, Article ID 591897, 7 pages
Research Article

Sedentary Behaviour and Physical Activity of People with Stroke in Rehabilitation Hospitals

1Department of Clinical Neuroscience and Rehabilitation, Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, The Sahlgrenska Academy, Gothenburg University, Gothenburg, Sweden
2Department of Florey, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia
3Hunter Medical Research Institute, Newcastle, Australia
4La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia
5Stroke Division, Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, Melbourne, Australia

Received 30 November 2013; Revised 4 January 2014; Accepted 6 February 2014; Published 19 March 2014

Academic Editor: Patricia (Trish) Manns

Copyright © 2014 Anna Sjöholm et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Sedentary behaviour is associated with health risks, independent of physical activity. This study aimed to investigate patterns of sedentary behaviour and physical activity among stroke survivors in rehabilitation hospitals. Methods. Stroke survivors admitted to four Swedish hospital-based rehabilitation units were recruited ≥7 days since stroke onset and their activity was measured using behavioural mapping. Sedentary behaviour was defined as lying down or sitting supported. Results. 104 patients were observed (53% men). Participants spent an average of 74% (standard deviation, SD 21%) of the observed day in sedentary activities. Continuous sedentary bouts of ≥1 hour represented 44% (SD 32%) of the observed day. A higher proportion (30%, SD 7%) of participants were physically active between 9:00 AM and 12:30 PM, compared to the rest of the observed day (23%, SD 6%, ). Patients had higher odds of being physically active in the hall (odds ratio, OR 1.7, ) than in the therapy area. Conclusions. The time stroke survivors spend in stroke rehabilitation units may not be used in the most efficient way to promote maximal recovery. Interventions to promote reduced sedentary time could help improve outcome and these should be tested in clinical trials.