This study assessed the association of anger, anxiety, and depression, and cognitive bias with pain and activity tolerance among patients with a musculoskeletal illness or injury expected to last more than a month. 102 Patients completed emotional thermometers to quantify symptoms of anger, anxiety, depression; the abbreviated Pain Catastrophizing Scale; a pain intensity scale; Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) Physical Function Computer Adaptive Test; the Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory and demographic questionnaires. Controlling for potential confounding in multivariable analysis we found greater activity intolerance was associated with retired work-status and greater depressive symptoms, but not with greater symptoms of anger. In addition, greater pain intensity was associated with greater symptoms of depression and greater catastrophic thinking, but not with greater symptoms of anger. Anger emotions do not contribute to symptom intensity and activity intolerance in musculoskeletal illness. Attention can be directed at addressing psychological distress and cognitive bias.