Knitting is the New Yoga

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September 17, 2013

Ok, that title might be taking it a bit far, but knitting and the meditative qualities of it can be quite relaxing and beneficial to the soul. If you know me, you know that I was born without the female gene that produces the desire to cook, sew, or do anything crafty. But, recently, I’ve been intrigued by all the yoga and knitting comparisons, and I’m thrilled to announce that my upcoming SKIASANA yoga and meditation retreat in Stowe, Vermont, will include sessions on the meditative and healing power of knitting.

Don’t worry, though, I will not be the one teaching these sessions, but rather I’ve recruited the lovely Dee Eisner, an awesome yogini goddess and friend of mine, to serve up the knittingasana at the Stowe Mountain Ranch.

I’m going to turn this blog post over to Dee to let her introduce herself and tell you more about the knitting and meditation activities planned during the retreat. Knit one, purl two – take it away, Dee!

“Like the counting of the rosary, the motions of needlework are singularly well suited to the practice of contemplation”  –From The Knitting Sutra by Susan Gordon Lydon

Dee Newsletter (6)

My passion for knitting precedes my passion for yoga by several decades, but the two practices now hold equal space in my body, mind, and soul. Both knitting and yoga center, enlighten, strengthen, and heal me.

After 35 years of teaching in the Cleveland Public Schools, I decided to become a certified yoga teacher.  I love to teach, and I love yoga, and I also knew it would be as beneficial for me as for my students.

My husband is baffled by my obsession with needlework. I always have a knitting project in hand while watching TV and never pack for a trip without my needles and yarn. Having trained in Transcendental Meditation during the ’70s, he eventually recognized that knitting is my meditation.

During my yoga teacher training I did extensive research on the meditative benefits of knitting. The physical, repetitive motions of knitting can create a mindful or even trance-like state. And, although even a simple knitting project requires a certain amount of concentration, part of a knitter’s mind can wander while the rest stays centered on the movements of the hands and the particulars of the pattern.

During our sessions at SKIASANA in Vermont, I’d like to show you how meditative and healing knitting can be.

If you are a seasoned knitter, bring a project that does not require you to consult a pattern constantly. Perhaps that scarf or shawl you never finished (or started – I know!). Something in a garter stitch or simple repetitive pattern that requires a bit of counting would be perfect.

Dee Newsletter (12)

If you have never knitted, or tried and felt fumble-fingered, I will have a simple project to teach you the basics – enough to get that meditative feeling. I’ll have extra knitting needles and yarn available for those who would like to participate.

Thanks, Dee! I won’t forget to pack my knitting needles along with my skis, and I’ll be joining the group of beginner knitters. I’m already imagining myself curled up by the fire at the Stowe Mountain Lodge after a day of yoga and skiing, relaxing into a knitting meditative state.

Check out this post for more details about the SKIASANA retreat. For booking information, please contact The Travel Yogi.

 

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