The process of adaptation to the physical and psychosocial consequences after stroke is a major challenge for many individuals affected. The aim of this study was to examine if stroke patients within 1 month of admission (n = 153) and followed up at 1 year (n = 107) engage in selection, optimization, and compensation (SOC) adaptive strategies and the relationship of these strategies with functional ability, health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and depression 1 year later. Adaptive strategies were measured using a 15-item SOC questionnaire. Internal and external resources were assessed including recovery locus of control, stroke severity, and socio-demographics. Outcome measures were the Stroke Specific Quality of Life Questionnaire (SS-QoL), the Nottingham Extended Activities of Daily Living Scale and the Depression Subscale of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Findings indicated that stroke patients engaged in the use of SOC strategies but the use of these strategies were not predictive of HRQOL, functional ability or depression 1 year after stroke. The use of SOC strategies were not age specific and were consistent over time, with the exception of the compensation subscale. Results indicate that SOC strategies may potentially be used in response to loss regulation after stroke and that an individual's initial HRQOL functional ability, levels of depression and socio-economic status that are important factors in determining outcome 1 year after stroke. A stroke-specific measure of SOC may be warranted in order to detect significant differences in determining outcomes for a stroke population.