I always end up with back aches or neck aches after a knitting session! What can I do?

(Note: This article is not intended as a substitute for medical advice.)

Many of us love knitting because it combines creativity with peace of mind. But let’s face it. Knitting hurts! Who among us hasn’t gotten up from an evening of yarny fun without noticing a twinge in the hands, wrists, arms, or neck? Your body

(Note: This article is not intended as a substitute for medical advice.)

Many of us love knitting because it combines creativity with peace of mind. But let’s face it. Knitting hurts! Who among us hasn’t gotten up from an evening of yarny fun without noticing a twinge in the hands, wrists, arms, or neck? Your body is your primary knitting tool, and you must take good care of yourself if you want to prevent injury. Here are three tips for healthy knitting:

 

Maintain Good Posture

The single most important thing you can do to prevent injury while knitting is to maintain good posture. Find a comfortable chair which allows you to keep your feet flat on the floor and avoid hunching over as much as possible. Sitting up straight with your shoulders relaxed and down will help you knit in comfort.

 

Use the Right Tools

There are four key tools that can help keep your knitting pain-free. First, invest in circular needles and use them even when you are not working in the round. Straight needles can cause strain on hands and wrists – especially when working on heavy projects such as blankets or sweaters. Second, if arthritis is an issue, consider bamboo or wood needles. Their warmth may feel more comfortable to arthritic hands than the coldness of steel or aluminum. Third, get a good lamp. Not only will adequate lighting help you avoid eyestrain, it will also keep you from having to hunch over your knitting to see your stitches. Finally, place a stack of pillows on your lap while knitting to elevate your work. This can prevent the need to bend your head forward which can cause temporary neck pain and even permanent damage to the spine.

 

Take Movement Breaks

We know that sitting for long periods of time, whether at a desk or in a comfortable knitting chair, isn’t good for our bodies. So take frequent breaks while knitting, and use that time to move. For every 30 minutes of knitting, try to spend 10 minutes in motion. Walk or dance around then do your favorite stretches to relieve tension and strain. Set a timer to remind you to take these movement breaks. Also, consider following a regular exercise routine including yoga or pilates to strengthen your muscles and increase over all flexibility.

 

Remember, no matter how well you can purl into the back loop, taking care of your body is the most important knitting skill of all. Utilizing the right posture, tools, and movements can keep your body in prime knitting form for years to come. yarn ball

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Comments
  • Ellen D.

    Thank you so much for the helpful hints. I get annoyed when my back starts to ache and I have to stop knitting. I’ll also try and pillow on my lap.
    Thanks again

    Reply
  • Barbara B.

    Posture and a good “rub-in” for your hands (any ointment that is for arthritis) is a big help, too. Also, just shake your hands every now and then, and do shoulder rolls. Unfortunately, some fo we knitters are disabled and can’t dance around the room, but we can do neck, back and chest exercises.

    Reply
  • I had the same problem. Now I watch a couple of things and feel better. 1. Sit in a firm comfortable chair that supports your shoulders, back, thighs and arms. 2. Drink lots of water 3. Take a break and move around or may be take a loo break 4. Flex the muscles of your hand and arm when you are on a break. 5. Keep the yarn ball at a comfortable distance so that it doesnt pull at the work and you dont have to strain yourselves to get the right amount of yarn for the stitch. 6. Last but not the least, keep the work-in-progress well supported either on the lap or on a table with your arms supported. These worked for me. Hope it does for every knitter/Crocheter. Happy painless crafting.

    Reply
  • Teresa i.

    Run your hands under hot water when they hurt while knitting.that refreshes them.

    Reply
  • Ramari R.

    Please take me off mailing list as I have arthritis and have given up knitting.

    Thank you Ramari

    Reply

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