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Objective: To evaluate the effectiveness of two Arthritis Foundation programs: Walk With Ease (WWE) and YOU Can Break The Pain Cycle (PC).

Design: Quasi-experimental, repeated measures design. Retested at six weeks and four months.

Setting: Community based intervention.

Participants: Volunteer sample of 163 adults with arthritis recruited through mailings, newspapers, and flyers.

Interventions: Subjects participated in a 90 minute seminar (PC, Group A), a six-week walking program (WWE, Group B), or both programs (Group C).

Main outcome measures: Survey assessment of arthritis knowledge, general health, selfmanagement activities, confidence, physical abilities, depression, health distress, and how arthritis affects their life. A Squat Test, a Six Minute Walk test, and a Timed Functional Walk Test were also administered.

Results: Subjects in Group B were more confident, less depressed, had less health distress, and less pain than subjects in Group A. Scores of Group C were between Group A and B scores. Differences in groups over time indicated that the WWE resulted in increased confidence, physical abilities, time spent in self-management activities and decreased pain and fatigue. All groups increased in walking endurance at six weeks, and increased in health distress at four months.

Conclusion: Subjects in different programs differed on impact of arthritis. These programs provide effective arthritis management opportunities.


Peter Blanpied has a dual appointment with the Department of Kinesiology and the Department of Physical Therapy.