We loved looking at this big colourful haul of gorgeous knits from the Knit and Natter Group, who meet at Alnwick Medical Group on Friday afternoons. At the top of the picture are baby jackets, mostly premature size. I love the contrasting edges on the ones at the top right. We also have some beautiful blankets and premature baby clothes from a lady who loves knitting but doesn’t come to the group. The multicoloured blankets left and front are knitted in beautifully soft chenille yarn. The pink/purple baby clothes and blanket were all made out of one big ball of ombre wool. The blanket is knitted in a design of alternating stocking stitch and moss stitch with a moss stitch edge. Isn’t it effective?
We were joined by a couple of members of staff from the practice today. Of course, we can’t let anyone visit us without doing any knitting so we found them some wool and needles and got them started. One had knitted before and soon picked it up again. The other was a complete beginner and after a bit of tuition she was doing brilliantly.
They were there to gather information for Social Prescribing Day (next Thursday, 12th March. Our knitting group was set up as part of the medical practice’s social prescribing work. At the end of the session we took part in a video interview and answered questions about the knit and natter group and what we get out of it. It was interesting to reflect on why we enjoy doing what we do. From my point of view……
- It’s good to interact with a friendly, supportive group of people with a shared interest. We enjoy each other’s company.
- We can share skills and learn from each other. There must be several centuries of knitting experience in the group!
- There’s a shared sense of achievement in completing a project or learning a new skill.
- Knitting for charity is a worthwhile use of our knitting skills to help others.
- Communal knitting is fun!
One question that really made me think was about the importance of holding a knitting group in a doctors surgery. I think it legitimises knitting as a worthwhile activity that’s good for physical and mental wellbeing. I know that those of us that knit have known this for years, but there are still people out there that consider it to be a boring solitary hobby, primarily for elderly women! Nonsense!
There are real benefits to mental and physical wellbeing
- The repetitive action of knitting has a calming effect, lowering heart rate and blood pressure (like stroking a pet or doodling)
- It’s a mindful activity. By concentrating on the activity of knitting you can slow down, focus on what you are doing and reduce stress and anxiety.
- It keeps your hands moving, good for the blood supply and muscle tone in the fingers.
- There’s always something new to learn. Learning new skills encourages the development of new neural pathways, great for maintaining a healthy brain and improving memory.
- Knitting groups are a great way of combatting social isolation and its effects of mental and physical health.
Now that this is being endorsed by healthcare professionals maybe more people will take up knitting!
What do you think are the benefits of knitting?