Olympic gold medals and knitting

It’s official: knitting is good for you. Actually, knitting, sewing and quilting are all good for you. They absorb your attention and require the engagement of your hands. They de-stress you by drawing your mind away from its key preoccupations.  I have written about this before (click here to see the post).

So it’s wonderful to know that British athlete Lizzy Yarnold is a knitter! In addition, she is unafraid to speak about it.  Lizzy’s sport is the scary-looking Skeleton. Here she is in action.

Lizzy Yarnold on her Skeleton

Lizzy Yarnold on her Skeleton from her Twitter account @TheYarnold

The Guardian dated Monday 19 February reports that on the morning before the big race Lizzy woke early after just a few hours sleep and ‘chilled with knitting’.  Clearly, this did the trick! She has just won an Olympic gold metal for the skeleton in Pyeongchang, four years after winning gold in Sochi.  Huge congratulations, Lizzy!

Lizzy Yarnold

Lizzy Yarnold, photograph by Mike Egerton/PA

The Guardian goes on to report Lizzy as saying ‘My nan taught me to knit years ago and passed away two years ago and so it’s a great way to feel connected with her’.  How great to hear about skills being passed down the generations.

Another example came to my attention this week of textiles providing therapeutic benefit and confirming emotional links to a grandmother: a beautiful quilt made by Sherrilyn Wood. It is fashioned from fragments of her grandmother’s housecoats, Sunday dresses and golf shirts and was made as a gift to the quilter’s father.  Sherrilyn is speaking at the QuiltCon event in the USA about quilting and the bereavement process.

Georgia Marie Wood (1917-2003) by Sherrilyn Wood

Georgia Marie Wood (1917-2003) by Sherrilyn Wood

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If you want to make a quilt for the first time, my ‘Clouds and Smoke’ pattern is a good place to start. You can find it here.

Clouds and Smoke

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