When you think of knitting, what's the first thing that comes to mind? Perhaps you envision your sweet, gray-haired grandmother lovingly crafting your favorite childhood blanket? Or maybe you think of the young and beautiful Audrey Hepburn, knitting with red yarn in the 1961 romantic comedy, Breakfast at Tiffany's?
Whatever comes to mind, odds are it's not a group of twenty-something business professionals hanging out in the employee break room, needles and yarn in hand as they collectively work to ward off the day's mounting stressors.
But knitting as a way to mitigate stress in the workplace is a new and upcoming trend. According to the Craft Yarn Council, one-third of women ages 25 to 35 knit or crochet on a regular basis. The handicraft is also catching the attention of a growing number of men. Now, knitting is weaving its way through the ranks of corporate wellness plans at many cutting edge corporations.
The known benefits of knitting include:
- Stress reduction
- Improved mood
- Better ability to handle illness, physical or mental
- Decreased risk of cognitive impairment as you age
The relaxed, repetitive motions used in knitting help calm both the body and the brain, and they also assist in creating a better mood. Additionally, all knitting patterns involve some aspect of math, which helps keep the knitter's mind sharp and conditioned.
For these reasons, many employers realize knitting comes with its own unique health benefits that can't be replicated through other, more traditional means. They also find the hobby's benefits compelling enough to incorporate knitting classes into their corporate wellness programs.
So the next time you think of knitting, don't be surprise if you find yourself thinking of the fun and relaxing class offered by your employer that helps you de-stress at the end of a busy workday.