Many of us will remember fondly receiving knitted jerseys, scarves and gloves from our grandmothers, made with love, care and great skill using only a ball of yarn and some knitting needles. Grannies enjoying knitting is a tradition as old as time, and there are some great health benefits too. We should encourage our seniors to take up the wonderful art of knitting. Or, if they already enjoy kitting, we should encourage them to keep it up. Here are a few good reasons why.
It Can Be Social
It might not sound like it at first, but knitting is a very social activity for many seniors. That’s because many seniors who enjoy knitting do it while sitting with others in social areas. Many senior homes and assisted living facilities, like this nursing home in Sidmouth, have various interest groups and social programmes and encourage their residents to participate.
There’s nothing like sharing your hobby with others, and it can be a rewarding and fulfilling experience to teach another how to knit. If there are a few keen knitters in the group, they might be able to collaborate and work on bigger projects or knit for the greater good by selling their products to raise money for charity or even donating them to local organisations that help those less fortunate.
It Keeps the Brain Active
Knitting is as technical as it is creative, and many patterns call for specific numbers or types of stitches to make up a pattern. This concentration and careful following of patterns is stimulating and keeps the brain active. The process of learning new knitting-related skills and stitches is also very useful for keeping one’s cognitive function active. Some studies estimate that knitting might improve cognitive ability and prevent decline by up to 50% in some seniors, which makes it an activity worth doing.
It Improves Hand-Eye Coordination
Just like it’s good for the brain, it’s also great for your muscles and joints too. As you age, your ability to maintain good joint movement in the hands and knuckles can become a struggle. Good hand-eye coordination also starts to decrease with age. Knitting is a useful exercise for both of these areas and helps seniors keep their joints working and their hand-eye coordination sharp.
Even if you’re already suffering from arthritis and joint pain, picking up and using a knitting needle can reduce joint pain and stiffness. There are also larger needles and yarn for those who struggle with severe arthritis.
It Can Keep You Occupied
Of course, another benefit of taking up knitting is that it can keep you occupied and help pass the time when there isn’t much else to do. It’s a muscle-memory activity, so it can also be done while watching television, so it’s a fun and productive way to keep out of trouble.
Knitting is incredibly therapeutic and can be almost meditative in its simplicity. It also provides many great benefits to seniors who learn the craft. Not only that, but the knitted things produced make very personal and thoughtful gifts to those who receive them.
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