KNITTING FOR QUITTING
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It's not often we receive emails from male knitters, so we were delighted to hear that knitting had helped Derek give up smoking. (27.04.10)
"Once upon a time. I would smoke twenty cigarettes an hour. Not unusual for a Man in a papermill. Every time I tried to stop, "the devil would find work for idle hands". I found however that when I was engrossed in physical work such as repairing stuff, I would forget to have a fag. One day I watched my Mum knitting and had an idea. I knitted a really rubbish scarf. My workmates got a bit of length out of Me at first, but I'm the one with the pointy sticks! That was fifteen years ago. My favourite knitting is when a work colleague or their wife is pregnant. I knit a bonnet and jumper for them."
If hypnotherapy and acupuncture haven't helped you to give up smoking, take a leaf out of Denise Pettitt's book and take up crocheting (11.05.09)
"I just wanted to add my
story about giving up smoking. I did it by crocheting! I
found it easier to crochet a few trebles when I would normally
have had a cigarette and started a ‘granny’ blanket.
I had my last cigarette at 9pm Saturday 7th March 2009 as
I was going into hospital to have an operation on my leg.
Knit To Quit (13.03.09)
No Smoking Day was 11th March 2009. In America people were also planning to give up.
Click here to read about one such story
"Five Top Tips To Help You Quit Smoking" (11.03.09)
Click here for the latest advice in The Daily Mirror about giving up - top of the list is taking up knitting!
Knitting To Quit (27.08.08)
We don't hear as much about knitting helping to stop smoking as we used to, so it was great to hear from Diane who has sucessfully given up smoking and taken up knitting.
"... you wanted to know if knitting helped in quitting smoking, well it helped me along with help from the Stop Smoking clinic at my GP surgery. It's two year ago now, you know the saying 'kill two birds with one stone' I was looking for a red cardigan to go with a dress I'd bought, without any success, so I decided to knit my own. Bought the wool, out came the needles & pattern (I choose one with cable), I think the cable needle became my substitute cigarette, a couple of weeks later I had my cardigan. "
Well done Diane!
Wolverhampton Express and Star: "Knitting No Drag For Julie" (10.06.08)
Click here to hear how Julie Molineux took up knitting to help give up smoking
Yarn Market News has provided the latest information about 'Knitting For Quitting' in Australia (13.08.07)
"Does knitting really help smokers kick the habit? This summer, two Aussie yarn shops put that theory to the test by instituting a Knit & Quit program conceived by Australian Country Spinners, owner of Patons and Cleckheaton. Since then, Queensland Health put the kibosh on starting a Knit & Quit in Brisbane, citing a lack of evidence as to its effectiveness, anecdotal testimonials from prior London- and New York-based groups notwithstanding. YMN checked in with Kristine Howard, marketing manager of Tapestry Craft in Sydney, to see how things went.
'We started out with 25 women—from twentysomethings to grandmothers—and probably had another half-dozen join in later. Most of the participants started smoking in school and had been trying to quit for years,' she says. 'We never promised that learning to knit is the magic bullet for quitting. Our view is that it's a complementary strategy, something to help people cope with the stress of giving up smoking.' Patons donated sticks, string and learn-to-knit guides. 'Within the first 30 minutes of the first class,' Howard says, 'they were trading stories about previous attempts to quit. People who were having success offered advice to those who were struggling. When someone had a setback, everyone commiserated and encouraged her to keep at it.'
About half of the group was composed of new knitters, though 'nearly everyone rated herself as a beginner,' Howard says. 'Some were happy to slog away on a garter-stitch scarf while others immediately moved on to hats, cushion covers and even jumpers. One of our teachers is an ex-smoker, and she's been an invaluable source of inspiration and advice.' Several K&Qers are now taking regular classes at the shop and a few even asked Howard for job applications.
As to how many knitters met their goal, it's difficult to say. 'We've had varying levels of success,' says Howard. 'The same night one participant announced she was 35 days' free of cigarettes, another confessed she'd broken down and had one after a stressful day of work. We tried hard to make everyone feel valued and welcome. There was some drop-off in attendance, and my gut feeling is that some people started smoking again and felt ashamed to return to the group. I hope at least we were able to teach them a new skill and give them some support for their next attempt.' The first session ended in September; Tapestry Craft is continuing the program and has already offered spots in the sophomore class to those who were wait-listed for the premiere outing."
HealthDay News in America advise: "Kick the habit for Good and keep your hands busy with activities like knitting," written by Diana Kohnl
Click here to read more
If you've tried patches and been to hypnotherapy to give up smoking, consider taking up knitting as Ed Barrett did:
"I thought I would drop
you a line to explain how knitting has helped me. I am by nature
a fidgeter when sitting at my desk I jiggle my legs, making tea
I practice tap dance steps. I can't help it I just can't sit or
stand still. I also used to smoke, I think it was another means
of not standing still if I got fidgety I could always go outside
for a smoke. I was, however, determined to stop and having tried
patches and hypnotherapy nothing seemed to work. Then I started
knitting, it was not with the intention to use this as an aid
to stopping I just asked my partner to teach me as I wanted something
to do while watching the TV. Well I was hooked and have been ever
since. But what interested me most was
I did get outside help with quitting, I spent some time with an NLP practitioner, but in the end it came down to will power and knitting. I decided that I would put off having a cigarette by an hour each day. The first day it was Noon, the next was 1pm and so on. If I slipped, there was no telling off I just stuck to the hour I got to until I wanted to move on. I found knitting took my mind off wanting a cigarette running up to the hour that I could have one. I also didn't tell anyone I was giving up. I didn't need the pressure of other peoples expectations.
In conclusion I think that Knitting, at least for me, was a huge benefit in giving up."
'Knit to Quit' is a new group being run by Lambeth Primary Care Trust in London to help people stop smoking through knitting. This article written by Juliet Rix, appeared in The Guardian newspaper (01.02.06).
In a cosy front room in Brixton, half a dozen people are sitting in front of an open fire, knitting and chatting. It is no grannies' get-together though, the average age is about 30. This is Knit to Quit, one of a number of new stop smoking initiatives outside normal clinical settings supported by Lambeth primary care trust (PCT) and the Centre for Public Innovation.
"The knitting is
not just a gimmick, " says Rachel Heywood, who runs the
group from her home, helped by a small grant from the PCT, and was
herself on 40 a day until a few months ago. "It
keeps your hands busy, and at the end of an evening you have produced
several inches of scarf rather than an ashtray full of fag ends."
BBC News (23.11.05)
Click here to read about 'The Knit to Quit' stop-smoking group in South London
Click here to read how one knitter replaced smoking with knitting
Review about Knitting (11.10.01)
Click here here to read 'An aid to give up smoking'
Click here to visit our 'Knitting as Therapy' page