Knitting Should Not Be a Pain: Six Steps to Avoid Discomfort While Knitting
There are many benefits to the art of knitting. As knitters count the rows and stitches, other stressors leave their minds. The rhythmic nature of knitting can give one a sense of calmness and consistency. People who suffer from arthritis also may benefit from the gentle motion of the fingers and hands, reducing joint stiffness and pain.
Prolonged knitting can, however, place the neck and back in a strained position that may result in pain. By following some helpful, easy tips, knitters can enjoy their favorite past time without discomfort.
- Work in a chair that offers firm support. Couches and recliners can promote the spine to adapt a “C” shape. A firmer chair will allow the spine to maintain an “S” shape.
- To support the upper back, place a small throw pillow or folded towel between the shoulder blades.
- Before you begin, do gentle warm ups:
- Gently roll your wrists in circles five times in each direction.
- Open and close your hands ten times.
- Shrug your shoulders up and roll them back ten times.
- Set a timer for fifteen to twenty minutes. When it goes off, gently look up towards the ceiling and take a small walk around the room.
- Knit with adequate lighting to avoid eye strain.
- Keep your work close to your chest. This prevents additional strain on the neck and back, compared to resting your project on your lap.
If knitting or other hobbies become difficult or painful, speak to your doctor about a referral to a physical therapist. Physical therapists are trained postural specialists who can help reduce pain and improve mobility with recreational activities.