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How crocheting affects your health

Updated: Mar 30

Some time ago, crocheting was associated with activity for older ladies. However, our grandmothers' hobbies have grown in importance and more and more young girls are using hooks and yarns and then boasting about their creations on social media.

~Handmade items have something magical about them.~

It will not be a discovery if I write that artistic craftsmanship is something more than a hobby, entertainment or a way to creatively fill free time. So, what else could tempt us to crochet?

And ...... This brings a question .... Does this passion for crocheting also have health-related aspects? Are there any interesting, simple arguments that will convince those who ask "why are you doing this"?

In this post, I will introduce 10 reasons that I think are very important, out of the many possibilities when it comes to combining health with crafts, more specifically crocheting.

Reduces stress - Lowers blood pressure

Unfortunately, everyday life provides us with a lot of stressful stimuli, so when you feel anxious or stressed, it is worth reaching for crochet and yarn, thus distracting your attention from worries and focusing on crocheting instead. The rhythmic and repetitive nature of crocheting helps to reduce stress, lowers blood pressure, and slows down the heart rate. The harmful concentration of cortisol - the stress hormone - is lowered in our blood. At the same time, the happiness hormones serotonin and dopamine are released. Through crocheting, we fall into a state of relaxation similar to that associated with meditation or yoga. By focusing on crocheting, you can get rid of the swirling thoughts. We give the brain free time to solve the problem.

Relieves depression

Depression is another civilization disease of the 21st century. It turns out that crocheting can be an extremely effective activity in fighting depression. When we do something, our minds release dopamine, a substance that greatly influences our emotions and acts as a natural antidepressant.

An organisation in Great Britain, which brings together enthusiasts of crocheting and knitting (Knit for Peace) conducted an experiment in which they examined a group of people who are passionate about knitting and crocheting. As it turned out, when knitting or crocheting, the body relaxes and the heart rate drops. We can stop worrying for a moment and take a break from the problems that haunt us. The conducted research proves that while sitting in an armchair with yarn and knitting needles or a crochet hook, we can reduce and even cure depression or anxiety.

Strengthens self-esteem

Regardless of whether you have trouble finding yourself in the community, or struggle with fears and problems, crocheting is a way to improve and increase the level of decision-making - literally. When you start crafting you are in complete control of everything from the design you make, the colour and type of yarn or twine, and even the type of crochet hook you want to work with - isn't that great?

Knitting and crocheting is not just a spiritual investment in yourself - there is more to it ... a hand-made work. You can please your eyes with it, you can also give it to a loved one. Such work increases self-esteem. WOW! I can make a scarf! So, I can do something more!

Builds and strengthens interpersonal contacts

Crocheting can be a form of occupational therapy. Working in a group, people can immediately connect with other people, which can help in breaking down barriers and fears of making new contacts.

There is nothing like a common hobby! We can find companions both among our friends and on blogs or forums on this subject. We share inspirations, ask for help, and boast about our works. In many places, local groups of yarn lovers are formed. It is not only creative but also a very pleasant way of spending time. Making contact with people is simple, as you can see, we can strengthen this relationship with the yarn.

Crochet mothers or grandmothers are also role models for children and grandchildren. Children are usually fascinated by what we do, they like colourful yarns and accessories, and they want to try them themselves. Working together builds stronger family bonds than watching TV together. They force us to interact and focus. Crocheting also requires closeness, which favours the production of the bonding hormone oxytocin.

Allows us to think logically

20 crochet stitches, 15 treble crochets, and 2 meters of yarn ..... Without a doubt, it is a hobby that we have to focus on and think logically. It requires counting the crochet stitches, measuring how many centimetres the sample has, calculating the amount of wool needed, and counting repetitive elements. Sometimes you need to write a pattern well, sometimes draw it. We have to stick to it if we want to get the right effect. Imagination, logic and mathematics train our minds perfectly.

Reduces the risk of Alzheimer

Crocheting can reduce your risk of developing Alzheimer's. Why? By engaging in mind-stimulating exercises, you can slow down or even prevent memory loss. Research by Yonas Ged, Associate Professor of Neuroscience and Psychiatry at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona, found that people who engage their minds by reading, playing games, or doing crafts (crocheting, knitting) had a reduced risk of mild cognitive impairment, which may be the first stage in the development of the disease Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia.

Dear crochet lovers ... we are not in any danger of sclerosis!

Cure for insomnia

Stress, constant life and pursuit of illusory goals make insomnia increasingly problematic in today's societies! By focusing on activities that are easy, repetitive and soothing, you can calm your mind and body down to the point of falling asleep.

A study conducted at Harvard Medical School conducted by the founder of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind-Body Medicine, Dr Herbert Benson, showed that repetitive movements and focus on manual work trigger the famous relaxation response, soothe and induce a meditation-like state, lowers blood pressure, and slows down the heart rate. And what do we gain from this? - They facilitate a peaceful, relaxed sleep.

Improve the work of the fingers

There is a lot of talk about a healthy lifestyle, gym and other activities. However, do we all remember that every part of the body deserves attention? What is not working disappears. If we provide stimulation all the time to our hands, they remain dexterous and functional for longer. Minor manipulations of our joints in the hands and wrists keep them in good condition. We have to admit that this is a very pleasant type of therapy for our hands.

Helps to control weight

Crocheting makes us focus on something other than snacking on when bored. Sitting down with a crochet hook to watch a movie (people with more experience do their crochet, knitting needles without looking at it all the time) is a better solution than sitting in front of the TV with a bowl of chips or popcorn.

In 2009, researchers from the University of British Columbia in Canada conducted a study on 38 women suffering from anorexia. During therapeutic classes, they were taught to knit. Almost 75% of the volunteers claimed that this form of activity lowered their anxiety levels and distracted their thoughts from eating.

Helps quit smoking

One of the most effective ways to combat the urge to smoke is to immediately change your thinking pattern. It is enough to change the course of your thoughts and do something completely different for a few minutes. Crocheting is addictive, especially if it's just little things to do. We want to finish our work, so we do it to the end and in this way, we wait out the attack of nicotine craving. We keep our hands full and this way you can trick your body and mind into taking it away from the thought of lighting a cigarette. It is an activity that is fun, easy to start and easily discontinued.

I hope that with this article I encouraged the undecided to crochet and I presented the sceptics with the iron arguments for taking the crochet hook in your hands! Who would have thought that such an inconspicuous activity could turn out to be so beneficial for our bodies?

Please let me know what you think about it. I'm looking forward to your comments.

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