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Happiness is Knitting!

Data Show You Can Knit Yourself into a Better State of Mind

Knitting has always been my go-to remedy whenever I am feeling stressed or just want to relax. I was therefore intrigued to find out that there is now scientific data that actually backs up my feeling of emotional well-being when I knit.

Ann Futterman-Collier is a clinical psychologist. She runs the Well Being Lab at Northern Arizona University.  Futterman-Collier ran a textile therapy study and the data show that there are mental health benefits to not just knitting but also crocheting, weaving and quilting.

According to Futterman-Collier there is a definite connection between the mind and body when working with textiles. Even though the study was just carried out among women, she feels that the findings also applies equally to men.

In this interview with Arizona Public Radio station, KNAU, she tells about her findings.

“People basically have a vacation from their problems,” she tells KNAU. “They can forget about what’s bothering them, and they get into something in the moment that energizes them, that leads to the repair in mood.”

Futterman-Collier studied 60 women suffering from various levels of stress. She had them either work with textiles, write or meditate. During their respective activities, the women kept track of their moods. And for good measure, Futterman-Collier also took saliva samples, monitored their heart rates to determine their stress levels and measured their inflammation. She then compared the stress-reducing results of each of the three activities.

“Textile handcraft making was associated with the greatest mood repair, increases in positive, decreases in negative mood,” she tells KNAU. “People who were given the task to make something actually had less of an inflammatory response in the face of a ‘stressor’.”

Futterman-Collier tells KNAU: “People basically have a vacation from their problems. They can forget about what’s bothering them, and they get into something in the moment that energizes them, that leads to the repair in mood.”

So if that old saying is true and “idle hands are the devil’s workshop,” hands that are busy knitting might be the workshop for positive thoughts.

Source: Yahoo Makers

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