Thursday, 8 March 2012

Yes, lots of knitting. Adult sweaters, several of them, mean the fingers are flying and my shoulders and neck are sore. To ease the pain I have taught myself a new way, for me, of knitting. Combining different styles of knitting can change your posture slightly with each style and using different muscles can help me knit longer without discomfort. So I am working Stocking Stitch by knitting across in Continental Style and purling back Portuguese Style. Portuguese Style is the only style I know of where it is easier to purl than to knit. youtube video
What makes purling so easy is that you flick the yarn over the needle with your thumb.
The yarn travels from the needle, around your neck or through a hooked pin and is tensioned in your hand. I made myself a pin with a large hook and eye closure. I hold my yarn in my left hand because for Continental knitting the yarn is in that hand and saves me switching the ball from one side to the other.
I don't purl any faster with this method but I am much more relaxed when I do it. I'm sure it's helping. Do you have any tips for doing lots of knitting without strain?


  1. Maybe not without strain but to make the strain less noticable I have two words. Red Wine.

  2. Red wine counts as a fruit serving too, doesn't it?

  3. I wish I did, I always find if I get carried away and spend hours click click clicking I always end up with backache. I find that my only solution is to balance out all the time sat knitting with some healthy exercise between!

    You can read about my life of knitting and running at

    Happy Painfree Knitting!
    Fleur xx

  4. My tip ranks right up there with Brenda's but my two words are "Order In"!!

  5. Ah, I've noticed that as I grow older I too have shoulder and neck strain. Mostly I try to take frequent little breaks, and I do exercises to strengthen the muscles in my upper back (the ones that keep us from getting hunched over) and stretch the muscles in my chest. When all else fails, I take a day off, but who wants to do that?

  6. Frequent stretching:
    1) Straighten your arm by your side, and gently flex your wrist both directions and rotate.
    2)Standing by a wall, put one arm overhead and drop your hand down your back as if to scratch between your shoulder blades. Use the wall to help apply a little stretching pressure.
    3) Using the same wall, lower your elbow and raise your hand up your back as if to scratch between your shoulder blades. Use the wall again to help with a little stretching pressure.


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