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Patients with stroke are willing to participate in aerobic exercise within a week after admission to inpatient rehabilitation. However, they perceive a lack of ability to perform aerobic exercise, social support from family and information as barriers. Implications for rehabilitation Aerobic exercise is recognized as part of comprehensive stroke rehabilitation. There is a need to better understand patient perspectives to develop and implement more effective interventions early after stroke. Patients lack confidence in their ability to overcome barriers early after stroke. Patients are concerned with their ability to perform exercise, fall risk, lack of support from a spouse and family, and limited information on aerobic exercise. There is a need to reinforce education with practical experience in structured aerobic exercise programs that show patients and caregivers how to manage disability and complex health needs.