Being physically active can reduce pain, improve mobility and enhance quality of life. Despite these benefits, many people with arthritis are sedentary and do not have access to health professionals to learn how to stay active safely.
A range of online physical activity monitoring tools are available and have potential to improve physical activity. Examples include online diaries, pedometers, multisensor devices and global positioning system (GPS) monitors, which can be used to share detailed information about patients’ physical activity with healthcare professionals.
What remains unknown is how these tools may be used most effectively by people with arthritis to better manage their disease.
To gain in-depth insight into this topic, our research team will hold extensive focus groups and interviews with patients, health professionals and healthcare decision makers in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia. Findings will inform the future design, testing and use of online physical activity monitoring tools to improve arthritis care.
This study is an important step forward in bringing arthritis patients’ self-management into the digital age.
Scientific posters presented about this study include:
Arthritis Patients’ Views and Experiences of Using Digital Technologies to Improve Physical Activity Participation Presented at the American College of Rheumatology / American Health Professionals Association Annual Meeting, San Francisco, USA, November 6-11, 2015, and the Canadian Rheumatology Association Meeting, Lake Louise, Alberta, February 17-20, 2016
Integrating Wearable Physical Activity Monitoring Tools into Rehabilitation Practice for Patients with Arthritis: the Healthcare Professional Perspective Presented at the American College of Rheumatology / American Health Professionals Association Annual Meeting, San Francisco, USA, November 6-11, 2015
Oral presentations given about this study include:
A Qualitative Study of Arthritis Patients’ Views and Experiences of Using Physical Activity Monitoring Tools to Support Physical Activity Participation. Presented at the Arthritis Research Canada/University of San Francisco Joint Meeting, San Francisco, USA, April 14-15, 2016
Web, Apps and Wearables: Tools for Joint Health? Presented at Arthritis Research Canada’s Arthritis Patient Advisory Board “Reaching Out with Arthritis Research”, November 2014
Scientific papers published about this study include:
Using physical activity trackers in arthritis self-management: A qualitative study of patient and rehabilitation professional perspectives. Leese J, Macdonald GG, Tran BC, Wong R, Backman CL, Townsend AF, Davis AM, Jones CA, Gromala D, Avina-Zubieta JA, Hoens AM, Li LC. Arthritis Care & Research. 2019;71(2):227-236.
This study is funded by The Arthritis Society.
Aileen Davis, Toronto Western Research Institute
Allyson Jones, University of Alberta
Catherine Backman, University of British Columbia
Anne Townsend, University of British Columbia
Antonio Avina-Zubieta, University of British Columbia
Gerry Sheanh, Arthritis Research Centre’s Consumer Advisory Board
Karen Tsui, Arthritis Research Centre’s Consumer Advisory Board
Cheryl Koehn, Arthritis Consumer Experts
Jennifer Burt, Arthritis Health Professions Association