Fitbit. Apple Watch. Wrist activity trackers of any sort... just about everyone has one these days. And knitters?! Lemme tell ya! We can use our knitting skills to "cheat" the system and beat out all of our friends for most steps, most hours standing and most activity each day!
But! Should we?
I was gifted an Apple Watch for Christmas a couple of years ago, so by no means am I wearing the latest and greatest of activity monitors, but I have learned that it will lie for me without my even asking it to!
The motion of knitting, whether Continental style or English (throwing) style, tricks our wrist trackers into thinking we're standing and moving. A LOT! I can spend a gloriously prone day on the sofa, knitting away on a sweater, and by the end of the day, not only have I reached my calorie goal, but my stand goal too (and lemme tell ya - those trips to the snack cupboard and the washroom definitely don't add up to 12 hours of stand time).
As much as we all want more time to knit, I've started to adhere to a simple work/reward program to keep myself a bit more honest with my activity tracking (and a bit healthier to boot)! It's no easy task because for many of us, knitting is a sedentary hobby, but let's see if we can't get off our duffs a bit more often AND still get lots of knitting done.
Tips and tricks to move MORE!
- Set a goal! I know we all have the "Just one more row" mantra reeling through our heads at all times, but set a goal. Whether it's to the end of the show you're watching, to the end of a pattern section (be reasonable - if you've just cast-on a sweater, don't wait until you finish the raglan shaping) or the end of a chapter if you're like me and enjoy knitting while listening to audio books. When you've reached that goal, PUT THE KNITTING DOWN! Stand up, do some stretches like lunges, or a few sit ups. Heck, take a walk around the block. Just do something to really earn those points that our knitting is putting up on our watches for us.
- Set a timer! Most activity trackers now have a countdown timer on them. If you have a hard time sticking to a goal such as the end of a show ('cuz c'mon, when you're binge-ing past episodes of Gilmore Girls, who wants to stop, right?), set a timer. It'll buzz, beep and all around harass you until you turn it off. Use that as a motivator to put the knitting down for a few minutes, do some knitting stretches, and get moving!
- Knit and walk! Alright, admittedly this is bit awkward at first, but if your fingers must be knitting, choose a project that can be taken on the go! One-color, easy, memorizable stitch patterns are the way to successful knit-walking. We have a ton of easy projects that are mindless enough that your fingers can keep working while you walk. Here are some fabulous projects that are totally walk-worthy (just be sure to cast-on before you start walking):
The long and the short of it? Yes, your knitting DOES affect your activity tracker, but there are ways to stay moving so you can feel good about the activity you track each day!