peripheral arterial disease, theory of planned behavior, walking exercise



  1. Galea, Melissa N. MSc
  2. Bray, Steven R. PhD


PURPOSE: This study examined psychosocial determinants of walking exercise among individuals with intermittent claudication and explored perceived pain intensity as a moderator of the intention-behavior relationship.


METHODS: Ninety-four participants (n = 61m/33f, 70.05 +/- 9.02 years) were recruited from a medical facility and completed baseline measures of attitudes (ie, positive or negative evaluation of walking exercise), subjective norms (ie, perceived social pressure regarding walking exercise), perceived behavioral control (ie, ease or difficulty for engaging in walking exercise), and intentions regarding walking exercise in the upcoming 4 weeks. Participants were contacted weekly by telephone for 4 weeks and asked to recall their walking exercise and associated perceived pain intensity for the preceding 7-day period. Outcome measures were participants' baseline intentions to walk and their reported walking exercise for 4 weeks.


RESULTS: Attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control contributed to a multiple regression model predicting 67% of the variance in walking intentions. Intentions and perceived behavioral control explained 34% of the variance in walking exercise. Perceived pain intensity was not associated with walking exercise and failed to moderate the intention-behavior relationship.


CONCLUSION: Findings support the theory of planned behavior for predicting walking intentions and exercise among individuals with intermittent claudication and suggest that pain cognitions as measured in this study do not play a role in determining walking.