After the Finland winter Olympic team was caught knitting to deal with their nerves before the intense competition, inspiration for Olympic knitting has soared. The Finnish competitors in Pyeongchang are each knitting a small square, which will be combined to make a full blanket. Once the blanket is complete, it will be presented to Finnish president Sauli Niinisto as a gift for his recent arrival of a baby boy.
Antti Koskinen, the snowboarding coach first caught knitting at the Winter Olympics, used our favourite hobby to deal with nerves. The health benefits for knitting are nothing new, with the repetitive action of needlework inducing a relaxed state not unlike meditation or yoga. Once you’ve learnt the basics of knitting or crocheting, the craft can lower heart rate and blood pressure.
Perhaps more importantly, unlike meditation, knitting and crocheting result in a tangible final product at the end, boosting self-esteem. The rhythmic hand movements helps to keep the mind in the present, stopping the knitter from mulling over the past or fearing for the future. The focus away from life’s problems and the feeling of accomplishment at the end helps to defeat anxiety and depression.
Knitting induces a form of meditation similar to mindfulness becoming an effective treatment against depression and chronic pain. Mindfulness is a difficult technique to teach, especially for those already suffering with anxiety and depression. These conditions make it particularly difficult to concentrate, which is why knitting and crocheting are so effective – they take the mind away from all worries and problems.
Koskinen’s moment of hygge – acknowledging a feeling or moment that is particularly cosy, charming or special – is inspiring to the many of people that also endure moments of anxiety in the face of an obstacle.
So take the time to knit everyday and show the world your creativity. We at HiyaHiya Europe can’t wait to be inspired by your beautiful creations!
Inspired to knit by the Winter Olympics in South Korea, visit our store to win gold by clicking here.