I used to teach how to crochet and beginning knitting lessons at 2 different yarn stores, which equaled 20 to 30 hours a week of crochet and knitting on the clock and another 20 or so for my own fun per week. After the first week of that you can imagine that my wrists, arms and back began to hurt! However, I was able to relieve these ailments by changing just a few simple things. Below are my tips and tricks to help you get through deadlines and crochet/knit overloads!
*Never crochet for even a solid hour without stopping for a minute to contract your fingers back and forth like you are grabbing something. Ideally, this should be done every 20 to 40 minutes.
*Stress balls are a great way to build up endurance.
*Take a walk around the room every hour or so to keep your body from getting stiff. This may seem like a waste of time when you are on a deadline but it helps your body in the long run.
*Don’t try to be a superhero, you can’t go from crocheting/knitting an hour at a time to a marathon. You need to gradually work up to longer and longer times. Your wrists have muscles and they need time to build up and get stronger.
*This may not work for everyone but try switching your dominate hand, after minimal practice I was able to crochet with my left or right hand. I am way faster using my right hand however when I am in a pinch it is nice to give my main hand a break and keep going with my other one!
*Examine the way you are sitting. Is your back supported? Is your arm supported? Are you leaning forward and putting strain on your neck? Many people find using a pillow under there dominate hand more comfortable.
*All hooks are not created equal! Some hooks give you less strain than others. Everyone is different, try a different hook and see if that helps! For me I prefer Soft Touch or Amour hooks by Clover. Some of my students prefer Boyle hooks with clay handles.
*Icy Hot patches are my friend if I get to the point that I am sore. They are nice because it can’t get on your project and it’s topical.
* Remember no project is worth injuring yourself, if you need rest don’t risk it and take the extra day or so!
Also this article is not intended to give medical advice, see your doctor if you need medical attention.
Editor’s Note: We thought you might also like our recent post The Health Benefits of Knitting and Crocheting. You are tending to your health when this happens by increasing your ability to remember things, dialing in your focus and lowering your heart rate. It does not matter if you are working on an easy crochet pattern or a difficult fair isle knitting pattern, the calming effects are the same.