If you find yourself dozing off when you take up knitting, do not feel bad, it is not a lack of attention on your part. In fact, most people feel sleepy when they knit.
Knitting is a sedentary activity despite what your Fitbit tells you, and it is best done at the end of a long day curled up in your favorite corner, stitching away.
When knitters get too much in the zone, they sometimes find themselves in the dream zone. So to answer your question “why does knitting make me sleepy?”…
The repetitive motion of knitting puts most people in a meditative state and is sometimes mistaken for tiredness. It is very calming to knit, so if you have anxiety and are finding it hard to sleep, this is an excellent hobby.
Not only will you be getting a cool sweater out of this, but you can also catch up with the Zs and feel more rested after a quick nap. Knitting can reduce stress levels, so if you are feeling a little bit on edge, you can pick up the needles and busy yourself with knitting.
Different intricate knitting patterns require focus, which can be tiring for the brain. The repetitive motion of the wrist to needles can be substituted for counting sheep, which is very lethargic.
The hobby of knitting at a specific time can help induce sleep at night and greatly improve the quality of your sleep.
Recent studies suggest that knitting can contribute to a phenomenon that elevates serotonin levels in your brain, which is an essential factor in reducing stress levels.
This may be why most knitting projects take longer than expected, as knitters tend to doze off while working.
What Happens to Your Brain When You Knit?
Serotonin is a significant hormone that knitters are familiar with. Whether knitters know it or not, they get much of it when they engage in this hobby. Serotonin is released with the repetitive movement of the needles.
Serotonin is a hormone, also known as 5-hydroxytryptamine. It is a monoamine neurotransmitter chemical that tells your body how to work.
Serotonin has different bodily functions like memory, regulating body temperature, sexual behavior, sleep, hunger, and happiness. If you lack this hormone, people can get depressed, anxious, have mania, or have other health conditions.
What Are the 8 Benefits of Knitting?
There are a couple of benefits of knitting beside the fact that it produces cool clothing that keeps you warm in the winter, and here are some of them.
Improves Emotional Stability
Research has shown in multiple instances that knitting produces a meditative state that activates the brain to generate calmness and contribute to improved emotional stability which factors into better decision-making.
So before you make any rash decision on a very important matter, why don’t you take up your knitting needles and colorful yarn and knit on it first?
Most people who take up knitting are senior citizens. It requires minimal effort and has a calming effect that is perfect for the aged.
Another benefit it has for seniors is that it keeps the brain sharp, and it is good exercise for the brain. A study confirms that knitting reduces the chance of developing mild cognitive impairment by 30 to 50 percent for the elderly.
Busy as a Bee
An idle mind is the devil’s playground. For people who can hardly move around, knitting is an excellent way to keep the mind and body busy without exerting too much effort. As stated before, it is good exercise for the mind and keeps your hands busy as a bee.
Keeps You Social
Although knitting is a solitary endeavor, and you might get lost for hours making repetitive motions with your needles, this does not mean that you cannot socialize with it. There are hundreds of knitting clubs that can prove that you can make friends while knitting.
Improves Hand-Eye Coordination
Seniors may have difficulty with hand and eye coordination, but with some practice with knitting, they can improve their state.
When you knit, you often make your brain and hands work in unison, thus honing your fine motor skills. It is also known to improve the strength and dexterity of your hands.
Helps Kids Read
Yes, knitting can help kids in enhancing their reading skills. As per WBEZ, knitting is comparable to weaving a tale.
Children acquire the ability to focus and concentrate while engaging in this activity. They also develop fine motor abilities required for writing, observing patterns, and moving from left to right, which is the same direction as reading.
Additionally, they gain confidence. Therefore, if your children struggle with reading, introducing them to knitting as a pastime may aid their learning.
Overcome Your Addiction
You can overcome your addiction with knitting, which is admittedly another addictive hobby. The best way to overcome an addiction is to replace it with another good addiction.
There are support groups like Massachusetts and Australia’s Knit to Quit group for smokers, which has impacted many people who want to quit smoking.
Some books even talk about the healing property of knitting, like “The knitting Sutra: Craft as a Spiritual Practice” and “Knitting Heaven and Earth: healing the Heart with Craft.”
Lowers the Risk of Alzheimer’s
The New England Journal of Medicine and the Mayo Clinic conducted research that revealed how knitting could prevent dementia later in life.
Engaging in knitting is a form of activity that can stimulate the brain and enhance neural connections.
Most of these connections deteriorate as we age, and engaging in activities that create new connections, such as knitting, is advantageous.
Why Does Knitting Make Me Tired?
If you are new to knitting, you might be surprised to know that the art of knitting is a little bit tiresome. How can that be, you say, when all you do is sit on your comfy chair and count away the stitches until you get a perfect little sock?
Well, attention to detail when knitting requires a lot from your brain. Plus, counting every stitch will have you yawning in a couple of minutes.
If you feel weird about this, do not be because many other knitters feel tired after a few minutes of knitting. This art can be monotonous but a little bit addictive, so you might find yourself fighting off the tiredness to finish on time.
Knitting also has a calming effect that may contribute to the feeling of tiredness. Once you are curdled up in your comfortable chair and start passing the time with your needles, you might lose track of time; sooner rather than later, it is nighttime and you feel exhausted.
Knitting is sometimes suggested to people who have trouble falling asleep. It is a great way to pass the time, and before you know it, you will be catching enough rest ready for the next time you pick up the needles to knit.
Does Knitting Count as Exercise?
Would it not be convenient if knitting counted as exercise? It would beat the treadmill or lifting weights.
Actually, a person of 150 pounds may burn from 100 – 150 calories per hour of knitting. Knowing that an hour of knitting is almost equivalent to doing half an hour of active exercise is exciting, and this is something that most knitters take advantage of.
Knitting is NEPA or non-exercise physical activities or NEAT, which is non-exercise physical activity thermogenesis. These are non-formal exercises you can do throughout the day, which can also burn your calories for the day.
Other NEPA or NEAT activities are: changing a lightbulb, sleeping, watching TV, Dusting, Desk Work, Scrapbooking, Cooking Dinner, Vaccuming, Moderate walking, and so many others.
Knitting is a sedentary activity with very few calories that can be burned in an hour of work, but it is better than not doing anything at all. Those few counts of calories can add up over time.
This is why knitting is very much advised for the elderly or physically disabled to pass the time. They get a finished product after the project is done, plus it keeps them busy and keeps their mind sharp.
Knitting is hardly an exercise, but if you add other activities along with it, you can get the body moving and burn some calories.
Other knitters would prefer to knit while they walk. In this way, they do not spend too much time on the sofa but also finish their projects on time.
Knitting can help you to lose weight. A study on women showed that when they knit, their attention turns away from craving food all day, thus keeping them from adding calories to their diet.
Knitting can develop fine motor skills and exercise the brain by keeping its attention on the project, thus improving your mental and physical health.