Research at the Harvard Medical School Mind/Body Institute has found that when an individual is knitting her heart rate can drop 11 beats a minute and her blood pressure drops as well.
"A growing number of medical researchers say that leisure activities that challenge the mind—like learning music, playing cards, knitting, and woodworking—can prolong healthy brain functioning. .. "In some cases, even mild forms of what we call a brain exercise have been shown to give you about six or seven additional years of cognitive ability," says Lawrence Katz, Ph.D., a professor of neurobiology at Duke University Medical Center. "
There you go, I'm preserving my brain cells. Now if I could just figure out how to knit whilst exercising... maybe on the reclining bike at the gym? No, I'm not really going to try it. There are actually a few limits to the amount of ridicule I'm willing to endure. I do KIP (knit in public) and now I can even justify it. So next time you want to make fun of me for knitting at parties, remember this. We're both killing brain cells with alcohol, but I'm rebuilding mine simultaneously.