Saturday, 19 August 2017

5 Reasons Why Knitting Makes You Smarter

knitting makes you smarter
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We've always known it, haven't we? Us knitters are a bright bunch and our hobby seems to help us stay mentally fit for longer. Knitting requires skills whose regular use encourages us to take the time to practice, again and again, those things that will keep us agile as we get older.

1. Focus

Knitting requires a great level of concentration, particularly if you are a beginner or trying out more complicated stitches. This attention to detail keeps our minds sharp as we work our way through patterns and make progress with every knit and every purl - not to mention yarn overs, increases, decreases, slipped stitches and on and on.

2. Cognitive agility

Every knitter knows that each and every project comes with its own problems. We are a stubborn bunch and won't stop until we have found a way to make things work. This may be fixing something as simple as a dropped stitch or finding a way to reknit an entire pattern repeat. We've all been there. We are problem solvers. The good news is this habit helps maintain our cognitive agility, which we will be thankful for in the long run.

3. Dexterity

Apart from our brains, we need our hands to knit. Clumsiness won't usually get you very far with knitting because it requires dexterity. Knitting every day or a few times a week helps to keep our motor skills at the same level as they are now. As we age, we may lose them to a degree, so having a crafty hobby that relies on the use of our hands will help us keep our range of movement.

4. Mindfulness

I already mentioned focus and it goes hand in hand with mindfulness. Focusing on one thing and letting go of whatever else usually occupies our minds is calming and relaxing. We become aware of what we are doing at that very moment and everything else slips into the background. We feel the yarn gliding through our fingers and hear the clickety-click of the needles. A cup of tea and the world is alright again.

5. Creativity

Knitting is an act of creation. Being able to make something out of string, only with the help of sticks, is quite a feat, come to think of it. Knitters are makers and creative people. This is only possible because of the four points above. Without focus, problem solving skills, motor skills, and mindfulness we wouldn't be able to create much at all. 

We should be very proud of this. Knitting is not an unimportant past-time. It is not as easy as people think and it is not just for grannies - though once we reach that age, we will be the sharpest, most agile grannies around.

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