The Unexpected Ways Knitting Betters Your Health

 © Miramcor | Dreamstime.com

Why Knitting is Good for Your Health

Combat stress with this relaxing hobby
The Unexpected Ways Knitting Betters Your Health

 © Miramcor | Dreamstime.com

Many people are spending more time than ever at home in quarantine due to the coronavirus pandemic and using this time to take up new skills or hobbies. Knitting in particular is a relaxing and practical choice that is actually proven to improve your well-being.

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Repetitively passing a single thread through two needles — or one, should you prefer crocheting — does wonders for the mind and body. The way the needles, your forearms and hands rest in a cozy cross in front of your chest as you work yarn in the brightest or calmest of colors creates a safe, soothing space to combat stress

Learn the basic stitch and repeat. Any mistakes can be easily corrected and materials can be reused should you need to restart from the top. Better fine motor skills are an obvious physical benefit of all needlework, which is especially useful for those in need of occupational therapy, the development or recovery of skills necessary for daily life and work through everyday activities. But studies have repeatedly shown knitters report other added positive health benefits, both mental and physical. 

In 2013, 3,500 knitters worldwide were surveyed online. Altogether, they reported increased feelings of happiness and calm, and those who knit more frequently reported increased cognitive skills. Regular participants in cognitive activities, like knitting, reading, computer use and games, reduce their chances of mild cognitive impairment by 30-50%, according to the study.

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Craft goods that warm more than the bodies that wear them. You may elect to gift knits for loved ones, build a small craft business from scratch or donate excess to your favorite causes like homeless shelters or cancer treatment offices and domestic and sexual violence clinics. This is just one way you can give back to your community and volunteer from home. All this, while a sign of care to others, increases your perception of your helpfulness and capability to make a change in your community. Knitting and volunteering are just two of 40 fun hobbies you can pick up after turning 40.