Learning how to knit might not be at the top of your list of things to do today, but maybe it should be. Knitting isn't something just your grandmother does anymore. Knitting is fun, productive and offers a number of benefits to boot.
Knitting is an undervalued activity that can be enjoyed by both men and women, young and old alike. It is even more fun when you utilize a knitting bag. And whether you are knitting a pair of socks or a simple pattern, knitting provides benefits to both your physical being as well as your mental well-being.
Sense of Purpose
Knitting is the perfect outlet for those who have goals and want an achievable task. Whatever you decide to knit, a scarf, hat or something less complex, the success of your project signals a release of dopamine, which stimulates your reward center. Basically, you get a feeling of euphoria when you knit a scarf, a bigger sensation when you knit an entire sweater.
For people who have a difficult time staying on task, the new Guardians of the Galaxy movie is really good by the way, knitting tends to tone down hyperactivity and helps those with trouble focusing on one thing.
Knitting is a task that produces a tangible result and the ability to see your progress reinforces the ability to concentrate on what you are doing.
The repetitive and rhythmic movements and focused attention required to knit produces a calming effect very much like medications. A recent study showed that people who knit describe the task as restful and soothing with zen-like qualities.
Many use knitting as a way to relieve the pressures of work and people with anxiety disorders report that knitting helps them cope in difficult situations.
Studies have shown that knitting makes people happy. One study asked respondents how they were feeling before they started knitting, about a two-thirds of them reported neutral or sad moods. After knitting, most of the respondents said they felt at least somewhat happy. Only one percent of them remained sad.
Knitting with other people increased the respondent's happiness and self-esteem. So it seems there is lasting pleasure in the task of knitting.
Knitting is so relaxing and repetitive that it offers the same benefits as a meditation session. The only difference is when you get done knitting, you have a scarf to show for it.
Improved Motor Functions
Knitting stimulates many parts of the brain all at once, parts that are used in attention, planning and sensory information. For this reason, it helps improve fine motor skills and distracts people from the pains they might be suffering.
Helps prevent Arthritis
In the same way you have to keep your brain healthy by using it, you can keep your joints healthy by using them as well. Gently using your hands and fingers helps build up cartilage, which makes it stronger rather than wearing it down.
So as you can see, there are many reasons you should take up knitting.