Lamont, A and Ranaweera, NA (2020) Knit One, Play One: Comparing the Effects of Amateur Knitting and Amateur Music Participation on Happiness and Wellbeing. Applied Research in Quality of Life, 15 (5). pp. 1303-1322. ISSN 1871-2584

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Previous research suggests that engaging in creative and meaningful leisure activities enhances mental health, wellbeing and quality of life. However, studies often explore specific creative activities in isolation. We compared happiness and wellbeing in adults involved in knitting (835 amateur knitters) and musical activities (122 amateur musicians). Participants completed the Subjective Happiness Scale, the BBC Subjective Wellbeing scale, and open-ended questions about past and current engagement. Knitters scored significantly higher on happiness than musicians. No differences were found for subjective wellbeing. Older participants scored more highly on all wellbeing measures, with no effect of time doing the activity. Open-ended responses were grouped into four themes. Learning and teaching was oriented towards communities of practice for knitters and formal teaching for musicians. Process involved positive and negative emotions, grouped around subthemes of self-care and sensory experiences. Outcome was associated with connections to others, expressed through pride or anxiety. Purpose linked to a sense of fulfilment, identity, and obsession. Despite differences between the activities, participants experienced broadly similar physical, psychological and social benefits. Further research should explore more creative and non-creative leisure activities to establish if these effects can be generalised and what other unique features may be involved.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the accepted author manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via Springer at - please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Music making, Knitting, Wellbeing, Happiness, Eudaimonia, PERMA
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
M Music and Books on Music > M Music
Divisions: Faculty of Natural Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 30 May 2019 11:13
Last Modified: 15 Oct 2020 12:45

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