Is Knitting Good For the Brain?

Juliana Garofalo

Good For the Brain

Knitting is a good way to keep your mind busy, but is it good for the brain? If you’ve ever wondered, you’re not alone. A new study shows that knitting may be beneficial to the brain. If you’re a knitter or want to start, read on to learn more.

Reduces stress

Knitting might be the perfect activity for you if you are looking for a way to relieve stress. It can calm your mind, lower your blood pressure, and even relieve anxiety and depression.

The repetitive motions of knitting create a meditative state that can help you calm your thoughts and keep you in the present moment. Knitting also promotes an increase in dopamine, a chemical in the brain that can regulate the functions of the reward system. It’s a feel-good hormone that helps you regulate your sleep and digestion.

Another benefit of knitting is the social aspect of the craft. Many knitters find that knitting is a great way to develop friendships. When you are surrounded by people in the same phase of life as you, it can give you a sense of comfort.

Soothes the mind

Knitting is an activity that soothes the mind and body. Knitting has many benefits, ranging from increased productivity to a more relaxed mood. Some studies show knitting can help alleviate stress, anxiety, and depression. Try knitting a small project if you have ever felt a little low on energy. You can even donate your work to a local homeless shelter.

A recent study on knitting and happiness showed that knitting was a better stress buster than surfing, watching TV, or reading. In a survey of 3,500 knitters worldwide, 73 percent of those who participated in knitting said they felt less stressed afterward.

Repetitive motions in knitting trigger the release of the feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine, which is associated with the sense, as mentioned earlier, of calm. Dopamine also regulates blood flow and digestion and is responsible for the sensation, as mentioned earlier, of euphoria.

It helps break bad habits.

The great thing about knitting is that it is a social activity for those who participate. The aforementioned oh-so-annoying time wasters may be avoided by adding a friend or two.

While you’re at it, why not sign up for a local knitting group? These can be life-changing, and not just for the knitters. You may be surprised to learn how many other people you know are also big yarn geeks! Not only can you meet new people and make a few friends along the way, but you can even learn a few new tricks in the process.

It is not uncommon for the average knitter to find themselves on a quest to knit the perfect hat. To keep them motivated, there are also support groups to turn to. You could even take up one of the many hobbies, such as crochet.

Supports neural pathways development

Knitting is a great way to support neural pathways development. It also enhances eye-hand coordination and promotes social connection.

Neuron pathways are highways that carry electrical signals and chemical information. The brain creates these pathways during bodily movements during childhood and adolescence. These pathways are used to link different emotions with thoughts.

There are many technical names for these pathways, such as “neurons,” “neural pathways,” and “neurophytes.” Each neuron can store up to 250 thousand bits of information. Then, when new information is encountered, a new neural pathway is formed. The more the neural pathway is used, the more dominant it becomes.

Studies have shown that adult neural progenitors can survive after injury. This suggests that the same process could be applied to nerve connections in people with a stroke.

Soothes anxiety

Knitting is a fun and relaxing hobby with numerous physical and mental health benefits. Some people find knitting reduces stress, improves their mood and bolsters their confidence levels. Other folks find the social aspects of knitting a plus. Many knitters find it a satisfying social activity that provides a tangible sense of accomplishment.

The scientifically derived proof of the pudding is that knitting stimulates multiple brain regions, leading to well-documented feelings of calm and relaxation. What’s more, repetitive motions like this are the best exercise for increasing serotonin, a natural painkiller that helps regulate the body’s blood flow, digestion, and sleep.

According to some studies, knitting is the only activity that produces a noticeable increase in the production of the feel-good hormone dopamine. This is a benefit, considering low dopamine levels are associated with decreased pain thresholds, anxiety, and depression.

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