How to Stay Healthy While Sewing

While it is great to believe that all of our hobbies have a few bonus health benefits, that’s usually not the case. When most people think of sewing, they imagine the hunched over posture, and repetitive strain you put on your hands from cutting, and stitching. The truth is, that while sewing has many health benefits, certain habits can negatively impact your health. To avoid health hazards and long-term injury, there are certain habits you should correct so you can remain healthy and only reap the positive benefits.

Care for Your Eyes

Without even noticing it, you may spend hours in your room fixing up clothes or completing projects. All the while, you're probably in standard lighting or poor lighting. Unfortunately, many sewers rely on the small light on sewing machines and a ceiling lamp or desk lamp. While you make think this lighting is fine, you need to be sure to take care of your eyes.

You can’t disappear into your dimly lit sewing room and hope that the years won’t cause some damage to your eyes. But, if you flip the switch, literally, you can actually help your eyes.

Our eyes need a combination of the light spectrum, so a fluorescent light on your desk lamp and a warm light in your ceiling lamp could do the trick. But don't forget to spend some time outside for some natural sun exposure as well!

Light has a huge impact on your eyes, and if you’re straining to see the fabric you’re feeding into your machine, you may need more light.

Maintain Your Spine and Core

The slumped position of a frustrated sewer behind a machine is a common sight in any crafter’s home. There are a few ways to battle this issue and take charge of your core and spine health. That stretching you feel when you sit up straight and tall, that’s your core trying to remember how to hold up the top half of your body.

To make it easy to practice good posture, you should consider the role the height of your table plays. The height of your tables is a major concern. If possible, adjust the height of your tables, or seek out a table that can adjust. Your cutting table should be higher than your hips, but lower than your elbows. Not only does your equipment height impact your posture, but its position on the table does as well.

The further away your sewing machine is from the edge of the table, the more inclined you are to slouch forward. Pull your machine to a spot where your elbows sit comfortably at 90-degree angles, and there is no strain on your wrists.

These positions will make it easy to sit up straight and make slouching uncomfortable. That will help you maintain your core and keep your spine aligned.

Make Time to Flex

The big stretch that you take after a long sewing session should not be your only stretch. In fact, set an alarm on a kitchen timer or your phone to go off every fifteen or twenty minutes. Then stand up and shake out your shoulders, elbows, wrists, and fingers.

Many sewers complain about repetitive stress injuries because they are doing delicate or small-motion-range movements for a long duration of time. Flex your wrists back and forward and do the same with your fingers. It can help you avoid repetitive stress injuries, both short and long term. 

These three issues are common among sewers, and by fixing them, you can stay healthy while sewing and avoid injury. Next time you sit down at your sewing machine, make sure you have plenty of light, your posture is good, and you take the time to stretch and flex your body.

Avoiding injury doesn’t only mean avoiding these bad habits. Be sure you are also properly storing all of your sewing items from GoldStar Tool, so you don’t accidentally end up with a nasty needle injury or an electric shock from your machine.