There is an old saying, “Idle hands are a devil’s workshop.” By extension, the opposite must be true – and hands that are busy knitting must be a workshop for all things positive. There are many studies that prove that taking up a hobby of some kind relieves stress, and it’s commonly known that solving puzzles and sudokus are good for you. However, knitting in particular has shown benefits that include relaxation, the ability to cope with illnesses better and a decreased risk of cognitive impairment.
Relaxed, repetitive motions such as the ones used in knitting can help calm down the body and the brain. Especially after a long, tiring and/or stressful day, working on something you enjoy that involves motions you don’t need to think about helps to create a better mood.
Coping with illness
This also holds true when working on a knitting project through illnesses of the body and mind – including depression, anxiety and fatigue. There are many stories all over the world of people being able to cope better with some kind of affliction, when they can escape the reality of their illness with the fantasy of a knitting project.
Prevent/cope with arthritis
Another major benefit of knitting is that it helps prevent arthritis, because you are constantly using your joints, which helps keep them healthy. Knitting builds up cartilage, making it stronger, instead of wearing it down, and does it better than typing does – without causing problems down the road. If you already have arthritis, don’t let that stop you! Soak your hands in warm water and use larger needles to create your masterpieces, and you will be glad that you’ve kept your fingers dexterous.
Develop motor and brain skills
Knitting helps develop and refine fine motor skills, keeping your fingers and hands feeling good as you master the craft. Additionally, all patterns involve some aspects of math, keeping your mind sharp. It’s really good to have something to focus on for the brain that is so relaxing at the same time.
Build social interaction
Knitting in groups is also quite beneficial, whether in a class or just as a get together with friends working on different projects. Being among friends can help combat loneliness and isolation, which if left to fester, can contribute to health problems.
With knitting, and many other hobbies, people are taking a mini-vacation from their problems. They can forget about what’s bothering them, and they get into something that uplifts their mood.