crochet health

I know that crochet heals. I know that it’s therapeutic. I know that crochet saves lives. I’ve known it since I experienced the life-saving powers of crafting more than five years ago. It was confirmed for me when I did the research for my book, Crochet Saved My Life: The Mental and Physical Health Benefits of Crochet, which was released almost three years ago (can’t believe it’s been that long!) And now there are a slew of news reports and media highlights hitting the mainstream that shows that it’s true that crochet heals. I’m happy to see this stuff showing up in mainstream media. I want everyone to know this!

I thought I’d share a roundup of some recent reports. Most of the reports either focus on knitting alone or lump knit and crochet together but my research for Crochet Saved My Life showed that most of the truths about the benefits of knitting apply equally or even more so to the benefits of crochet.

“Psychiatrist Teresa Anderson, who practices in Cincinnati, Ohio, recommends knitting and crochet to patients suffering from PTSD, anxiety and major depression. A knitter and crocheter herself, she’s been urging patients to stitch since medical school.” – From the Craft Yarn Council 2014 report on the benefits of crochet and knitting

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Knitting is included in some smoking-cessation programs and rehabilitation clinics, and UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital San Francisco offers a knitting class for young patients and parents.” – SF Gate report

“In a 2012 study, Mayo Clinic professor of neurology and psychiatry Yonas Geda and colleagues studied the effects of activities including knitting, quilting and playing games in 1,321 seniors, nearly 200 of whom had mild cognitive impairment, an intermediate stage between normal aging and dementia.The researchers found that those who engaged in crafting, computer activities, playing games and reading books were 30 to 50 percent less likely to have mild cognitive impairment than those who did not. Geda notes that activities such as crafting may help build up “cognitive reserves and the ability to buffer and withstand lots of assault by bad chemicals in the brain and bad proteins accumulating.”

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“As I progressed in years, my attention issues were self-managed. I got through high school by crocheting and knitting during class, much to the chagrin of my class bullies, who would balk at my being allowed to do so. We were honors students — how was I allowed to crochet during lecture? Because my teachers knew that I could participate in a lecture and repeat whole sentences from memory BECAUSE I crocheted during class. Keeping my hands occupied improves my focus greatly; with a simple enough project, I can watch movies with my full attention, never looking down at the needles. (This, I suspect, also delayed my ADHD diagnosis until college, when my professors did not allow me to knit or crochet during class.)” – via @xojanedotcom
There’s survey evidence to support crafting’s dopamine effect. In one study of more than 3,500 knitters, published in The British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 81% of respondents with depression reported feeling happy after knitting. More than half reported feeling “very happy.” – CNN report on benefits of crafting
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“A lot of studies show one might not be able to speak about what’s going on in life, but the mindfulness of just creating a piece of art really does help relax a person,” said Allison Smith, communications and marketing coordinator for the Cancer Support Center.” – From an article on the benefit of singing bowls that also mentions and knit and crochet group for cancer survivors
“It is now scientifically proven that crochet helps alleviate depression because it helps lower anxiety and blood pressure giving us an escape from that with ails.”YarnObsession
“Repetition is also key in this benefit. Relevant, repetitive tasks that you practice often, like crocheting, are important for forming synapses, thus improving your ability to learn new things.” – 5 reasons why crochet is good for your brain via CrochetTherapy
“Once a person decides to become a crocheter, he or she can join a social group with others who also enjoy crochet. These types of groups foster positive relationships, and members often celebrate achievements with one another, whether that’s the completion of a first project, or the mastery of a difficult skill. Belonging to these groups reduces a person’s feelings of isolation”. – Gypsy Daughter

San Francisco based and crochet-obsessed writer, dreamer and creative spirit!


  1. CrochetBlogger Reply

    squintsymcgee Thanks for sharing my post on how #crochet heals!

  2. Pingback: Crochet Blog Roundup: May in Review — Crochet Concupiscence

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