Benefits of crocheting

Benefits of Crocheting

Crocheting can help you feel calmer, happier and less stressed. There are also surprising health benefits to crocheting such as reducing depression, anxiety and insomnia.

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What are the Benefits of Crocheting?

In 2020, an international study was conducted to investigate the correlation between crochet and well-being.

P. Burns and R. Van Der Meer interviewed respondents in 87 different countries and cited the most frequent reasons for crocheting were:

  • To be creative
  • To relax
  • For a sense of accomplishment 

This study found that crochet helped the respondents feel calmer, happier and more useful. There was also a significant improvement in their moods after they started crocheting. 

The data from this study suggested that “crochet offers positive benefits for personal well-being with many respondents actively using crochet to manage mental health conditions and life events such as grief, chronic illness and pain.” 

Benefits of crocheting survey results

Craft Yarn Council also did a survey and found that crochet and knitting reduced stress, improved mood and increased memory. Respondents noted that crocheting and knitting gave them a feeling of accomplishment, a sense of confidence, and better concentration and problem-solving.

Benefits of Crocheting

There are several more health and well-being benefits to crocheting:

Delays Cognitive Decline

Crochet requires creativity. In order to be creative, you need to focus and concentrate. Experts agree that the art of being creative has extensive mental health benefits. Dr. Cathy Machiodi shared that creativity may be just as important as diet and exercise. She cited multiple studies, including that in 2005, the Mayo Clinic proposed that people who engage in art activities such as crochet may delay cognitive decline in old age.

Increases Self-Esteem

Learning a new skill, such as crochet, can have several mental health benefits including an increase in self-esteem. According to Bayshore Healthcare, learning a new skill is linked to optimism, self-esteem and life satisfaction and can help reduce stress and anxiety.

Every time you master a new aspect of crochet or you finish a project, it can lead to a feeling of productiveness and usefulness, which contributes to your self esteem.

Crochet can be as challenging as you want it to be. Once you learn the basics, you can continue following crochet patterns for beginners or you can move on to more advanced and intricate designs such as these 50+ Interesting Things to Crochet. Crocheting is a lifelong learning process and even when you have mastered all the stitches, you can challenge yourself by designing your own unique creations.

Helps Others

Crocheting is a wonderful way to give back to others. Many people donate scarves and hats to shelters, baby blankets and baby hats to hospitals and other items to charities.

2020 Crochet Gift List - 50 Free Crochet Gift Ideas to Make in 2020

And then there’s gift giving. I created this whole website around the fact that giving a crochet gift brings joy to both the person receiving it and to yourself when you see the look on the person’s face. All my free crochet patterns are designed to make great gifts or find your next crochet gift idea.

Reduces Stress

In 2022, American Psychology Association released an alarming study about Stress in America. This study found that approx. 76% of all American adults have experienced health impacts due to stress in the last month including headache, fatigue, feeling anxious and/or depressed/sad.

Woman crocheting

Crochet offers a form of relaxation and mindfulness, which can help put stress at bay because you are focused and mindful of the task at hand. Your breathing slows, your mind is not racing and you are concentrating on one task at a time.

Keeps Your Mind Active

If you’ve ever heard a crocheter shout “I’m counting!” it’s best to stop talking and let them finish. That is because there is a lot of math involved in crochet. This math is great for your brain.

Harvard includes “learning a new skill” as a potential way to help prevent Alzheimer’s.

Helps with Grieving

After suffering from a loss, learning how to crochet can help provide a positive distraction. It can allow for a quiet time of reflection as you crochet your stitches and offer a sense of accomplishment once the project is complete.

There are many online crochet groups you can join and share experiences and these connections can help you not feel isolated.

Allows You to Be in Control

There’s a joke that when you have yarn and a hook in your hand, you’re known to be “yarned and dangerous.” But there’s some truth to that. With some yarn and a hook, you are in front of a world full of endless possibilities. You can create whatever you would like. You can go at your own pace and you can stop and start over at any time.

In one of my Crochet Tips for Beginners, I state that you should learn the rules like a pro so you can break them like an artist. With you in control of your crochet, you can make up your rules and designs and there is nothing more freeing than that.

Connects You to a Community

There is a great camaraderie amongst crocheters. We can all joke that we spend too much money on yarn and we all understand the frustration of having to frog (undo) your work.

Crocheting in groups

“You crochet too?!” This is how you will meet lots of new people. And online, there are so many forums and groups on social media of people sharing patterns, showing off their latest make, asking questions and laughing together.

Easy to Tote Around

Generally speaking, it is very easy to bring your crochet with you wherever you go, unless of course you are 3/4 of your way through a King size afghan. I use a travel crochet case and made a bag from this Tote Bag Crochet Pattern.

Crochet tote bag

Having your hobby with you away from home can help provide comfort and reduce feelings of isolation.

Good for your Body and Brain

Crocheting involves fine motor skills, which keep your fingers and hands strong and coordinated. Fine motor skills are also good for your brain and can deteriorate over time, which is why practicing skills like crochet is beneficial to your overall health. Crochet is also a positive distraction that can take your mind off chronic pain.

Woman crocheting

Helps with Depression and Anxiety

Crocheting can reduce depression and anxiety because of the meditative and repetitive action that is involved when you crochet. When your mind is focused, the nervous system slows down. The feelings of sadness that comes with depression and the threatening sensations that come with anxiety are suppressed.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Benefits of Crocheting

What are the Pros and Cons of crochet?

The pros of crochet include the many health and well-being benefits such as helping relieve stress, depression and anxiety and increasing self-esteem, productiveness and usefulness. The cons of crochet include being frustrated as you learn, having pains in your hands from holding the hook too tight and becoming so engrossed in crochet that you neglect other areas of your life.

With all the benefits, there are some things to remember to ensure your hobby actually helps and not hurts.

When holding your hook, try not to hold it too tightly. This can cause pain in your fingers. 

Take breaks. Although it’s so tempting to keep going for one more row, listen to your body and stretch when needed. Certain yarns such as cotton can be harder on your hands to work with. 

Learning how to crochet takes time, persistence and patience. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Go easy on yourself. Luckily, with the help of the internet, there are so many resources available to help at every level. Remember that it is the journey of mastering the skill that’s important, not the destination.

Living a balanced life is essential and it’s vital not to neglect other areas of your life in favor of crochet. Crochet is a very healthy hobby when it is part of your well-rounded life.

Is Crochet Good for the Brain?

Crochet is an excellent creative outlet and fine motor skill that is very good for the brain because it focuses and concentrates your mind providing mindful repetitive actions that can have calming, stress-reducing effects and can keep your cognitive abilities sharp. There has been evidence to show that crochet can help prevent Alzheimer’s and delay cognitive declines.

What Skills Do You Get From Crocheting?

Crochet itself is a skill that you learn. In addition to learning how to crochet, you will also become more creative, a better problem solver and more productive. You will also utilize new and existing math skills, fine motor skills and risk-taking skills.

Why is Crochet so Addictive?

Like anything you are trying to master, learning how to crochet can be very addictive as you challenge yourself to grasp new techniques, try new stitches and complete new patterns. It’s important to take frequent breaks and not neglect other areas of your life.

In closing, crochet is a wonderful way to improve your mental and physical health and overall well-being.

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