Quality of Life
In more recent years academics have sought to find a more comprehensive definition of Quality of Life (QoL) and well-being which does not solely focus on the achievement of goals or the absence of difficulty. In a study including young people with AUTISM, they described ‘well-being’ as feeling supported, included, respected, valued and capable (Foley et al., 2012). Milton (2012), an adult with Asperger Syndrome (AS), argues that wellbeing relates to an individual with AUTISM’s ability to experience ways of being that are attuned with their characteristics rather than having to replicate behaviours of others without autism.
Withey (2017), suggests that those with AUTISM typically spend less time engaged in interactions with peers and more time engaged in repetitive, stereotypical behaviours. This may not only result in difficulties at school but also impact upon their quality of life. Chan et al., (2013), advocates involvement in leisure skills and activities which can have positive effects on social skills, communication abilities and overall quality of life.
Personal independence and involvement in leisure activities such as swimming (which has additional benefits such as improved balance, flexibility, reduced stereotypical behaviour and enhanced social behaviour and social interaction skills – Jull et al., (2016) Lego clubs or coder do jo (depending on personal preferences), will not only provide greater interests reducing times of social isolation but will ultimately enhance the individual’s quality of life.