Factors associated with participation in physical activity among adults with hypertension in Kigali, Rwanda
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Hypertension is one of the most common non-communicable diseases, and it is the leading cause of cardiovascular diseases, death and disability worldwide, especially in developing countries. Physical activity has been regarded as a commonly accepted modality for preventing and treating hypertension. However, despite its known benefits, this modality of treatment and prevention of hypertension continues to be underused.The present study aimed to determine the demographic, social and health-related factors that are associated with levels of physical activity participation among adults with hypertension in Kigali, Rwanda. This cross-sectional study was conducted with 252 adults with hypertension and 87 healthcare professionals through the Godin Leisure-Time Exercise Questionnaire (GLTEQ) and Physical Activity Exit Interview (PAEI). Two thirds of the participants (69.44%) were classified as sedentary. The following factors were found to be significantly (P<0.05) associated with the levels of physical activity:age, marital status, and level of education, residence, tobacco; past and current users, alcohol; current user, diabetes mellitus, BMI, perceived health status, self-efficacy, and blood pressure. None of the healthcare professionals were considered good physical activity counsellor. The findings of the present study highlight the need for the implementation of health promotion strategies aimed at promoting physical activity lifestyle among individuals with hypertension in Rwanda. Efforts should be made in educating people with hypertension on the benefits of integrating regular physical activity in their daily lives. Furthermore, healthcare professionals should be educated concerning how to promote physical activity to all patients especially those with hypertension.