Last updated: May 7, 2023
Knitting is something we probably associate with our grandmothers or mothers. However, it may become your new favourite hobby, and there is definitely a reason for that. Knitting is not just a way to make an original scarf, knit bernat blanket yarn, gloves or warm thick socks for the winter. It has far more health and mental benefits than you might think.
Knitting can seem boring, tedious and even nerve-wracking. But scientists do not agree with this. They found that this activity is good for our psyche. In psychology, there is even a special term – “medical knitting”. How exactly can knitting needles and threads help to cope with negative emotions? We will tell you below about the benefits of knitting for our body.
According to research, knitting has an extremely positive effect on our emotional, mental and of course physical condition of a person.
1. Reduces anxiety
Knitting using a weaving yarn has a calming effect. May help reduce anxiety, and stress and have a beneficial effect on depression. The repetitive motions of knitting and focusing on the neatness of the stitches have a meditative effect on the brain. It makes you detach from your problems, and from your thoughts, which suppresses stress and stimulates a sense of well-being.
2. Knitting can boost self-confidence
Knitting can boost your self-esteem. When you create something beautiful and colourful with your hands, you may feel more capable, more talented, and more confident in your creative abilities. Your self-esteem will increase even more if you receive compliments for your creations. The more sophisticated design you create, the higher your self-confidence will become.
Even if you struggle to use your hands to knit, you can use a knitting machine to create something beautiful and get the same benefit.
3. Knitting can help prevent arthritis
Knitting helps improve finger and wrist movement. Regular practice can keep the joints of the hands and fingers in good condition, which is helpful in preventing arthritis. Knitting helps to nourish the cartilage of the hands, stimulates blood circulation and thus reduces the risk of wear and tear on the joints.
4. Develops movement precision
Knitting stimulates the development of small movements in the formation of loops and knitting. That is why it is very suitable for both adults and children. You can turn knitting into a fun game for kids. This will help them develop fine motor skills and precision in small movements, improve their attention to detail, and stimulate their design and creativity.
Knitting is also useful for people suffering, unfortunately, from Parkinson’s disease, a disease associated with impaired motor function. According to research, knitting helps improve coordination and pattern recognition.
5. Slows down the ageing process of the brain
With age, with the onset of neurodegenerative diseases, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, cognitive abilities and resources for systematizing information decrease. Regular training of memory and cognitive processes through knitting can slow down these problems.
6. Makes the brain more mobile
To knit a beautiful thing, you need a lot of concentration. Knitting needles and hooks develop fine motor skills of fingers well. In addition, looping requires developed hand-brain coordination. When we knit something meaningfully, the brain starts to work harder.
Therefore, knitting is a great hobby for older people. The ability to concentrate and keep attention on one thing helps to delay or prevent the development of dementia. When knitting, hand motility improves, as well as overall visual coordination. Throwing even simple loops on knitting needles is prescribed for young children with arthritis and movement disorders.
7. Improves social skills
Knitting seems to be the perfect hobby for singles who do not like to chat in vain. In fact, this activity is great for developing social skills. You must have seen how our grandmothers get together to knit something. When you master the skill of knitting well, the process becomes less energy-intensive. The fingers automatically loop over the spokes, so you have no difficulty in holding a conversation. It also has a positive effect on the functioning of the brain. It does three things at the same time: controls the arms, monitors loops, and processes speech.
8. Helps cope with depression
In psychology, therapeutic knitting is often prescribed for people suffering from depression. This activity not only calms the mind. Scientists have proven that when we knit, our body intensively produces serotonin. It is a hormone of happiness, which is considered a natural antidepressant. And depression usually develops precisely with its lack in the body.
9. Increases self-esteem
It’s always nice to create something with your own hands. Knitting also boosts our self-esteem. We not only learn a new skill but also see the result of our work. And hand-tied things are nice to give to your friends and relatives. They, of course, praise us in return, which also has a good effect on self-esteem. Knitting helps people express themselves and unleash their creativity.
10. Burns calories
Although knitting is considered a monotonous process, high concentration requires a lot of energy from the body. Scientists have calculated that for half an hour throwing loops on the knitting needles you will spend as much as 55 calories. Yes, this number cannot be compared with the cost during a run, but still, long knitting sessions are also good for the figure.
11. Improves sleep quality
Insomnia most often appears due to high stress, anxiety and fatigue. And knitting helps fight them. This is a monotonous activity that calms the mind. A high concentration of attention on repetitive activities also takes a lot of energy. Therefore, it is useful to knit before going to bed, then you will go to bed relaxed and free from tension.
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