As a society we have seen a recent shift in mindset regarding health and healthy living. In the past, the emphasis was more external. Train longer, run faster, jump higher, win more. With common sayings such as, “When you look good, you feel good.” While not untrue, this quote is a good example of where priorities were placed by many within the health community. It was physical first, mental secondary.
Today, we are beginning to see a shift in the way health is defined. While physical health is of course important, we’ve taken great steps forward recently in the area of mental health.
We’ve seen a host of recent athletes such as Naomi Osaka & Simone Biles publicly state that they were dropping out of competitions to focus on their mental health. And while those decisions may have been more heavily criticized in the past, it is being applauded by many today as a beacon of how the average person should look at their health. A more holistic approach of mind and body working together.
Does that mean we should skip the gym in exchange for eating our favorite snacks while meditating? Not so fast. However, there are a many activities that should be done to keep the mind sharp and functioning at a high level in addition to our bodies. Knitting, weaving and similar crafts are high on this activities list according to researchers!
In 2005 a group called Stitchlinks was established to study the benefits of knitting and crating as “a bilateral, rhythmic, psychosocial intervention that has the power to transform people’s lives.” According to one of the leading researchers, “Knitting in itself is a sort of medication and stress reliever.” And that “Studies show craft skills such as knitting and weaving can help reduce memory concerns and assist in preventing memory loss.”
An article in the Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinic Neurosciences studied mild cognitive impairment (MCI) which is typically associated with the general aging process. They found that , “Craft activities such as knitting, quilting, weaving, spinning and felting in addition to reading books and playing games were all associated with significantly decreased odds of having MCI.”
So without further ado, below is a list of the health benefits associated with knitting & crafting.
Health Benefits of Knitting & Crafting
• Reduced depression and anxiety
• Fine Motor Skill Improvement
• Cognitive Anchoring
• Lowered blood pressure
• Increased sense of wellbeing
• Slowed onset of dementia
• Reduced loneliness and isolation
• Distraction from chronic pain
If you have never knit, spun, felted or woven before, these are absolutely great activities to begin. They’re fun, therapeutic, and rewarding!
Simply find a yarn/roving retailer of your choice to order supplies from, then talk to a knitting friend willing to teach you, join a class, a knitting club, or simply watch a few Youtube knitting / crafting tutorial videos.
If you’re looking for knitting, spinning and felting tools and fluff, you’re in luck! You’re already on a site that offers a variety of tools as well as yarns and wool rovings. Simply browse our selection of yarns here and wool roving here, or head to your own favorite local yarn shop.