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Five Health Benefits Of Pottery Making

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Health Benefits of Pottery Making
Caption: Making pottery is a also meaningful activity and great way to bond with your child. Photo Credit: Lindsey Elsey on Unsplash
By Emma Lin
July 26, 2022

Remember way back when your first taste of moulding and squishing clay into a somewhat identifiable shape came in the form of plasticine during Primary School Art lessons? If Art isn’t your profession, then likely that was your last experience with making pottery. Mucking around with gooey clay in your hands is not only pure fun but is also good for your health. Imagine that! The art of pottery is ever so often described as therapeutic and relaxing. As you spin the clay, your mind, and body are one. You open up your mind and set aside all worries. Making ceramics brings about numerous health benefits like reducing stress and relieving pain. Here are the top five health benefits that making pottery can bring.

Relieves Stress

Seeing your child wriggle their hands in a pile of sand may not be your cup of tea, but they have great fun doing it and perhaps you might have even loved to do so way back when. Why? The sense of touch is the first to develop which incites kids to explore and touch anything and everything they can – the squishier the better! Making pottery engages your tactile sense and sends across a state of calm through your body. As you begin crafting your art piece, the cares of the world peels away, your blood pressure reduces, breathing regulates. You’ll soon realise that after 30 minutes of moulding clay, your cortisol levels decrease. You start to feel light, airy and probably didn’t know what you were stressed out with in the first place by the time you’re done with your masterpiece.

Caption: Tactile and social activity at its best with clay play. Photo Credit: https://sites.globalhealth.duke.edu/rdac/what-we-do/
 

Eases Pain And Discomfort

Aside from being a stress reliever, working with ceramics can also ease pain and discomfort. Those who are prone to arthritis in the hands might find this a useful activity as the movement of making pottery is gentle yet effective in strengthening hands, wrists and arms. Typically, arthritis tends to worsen with age. There are, however, recommended ways for those suffering with arthritis can get some relief.

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One of the ways is through low-impact exercises like pottery. Therefore, pottery can be a way to promote movement and dexterity, reducing less inflammation in the joints. Furthermore, since pottery helps to relieve stress, it can also be a natural pain killer for stress-related pain. These can take the form of migraines, back pain, tension headaches and more. Stress is reduced and your muscles feel more relaxed when working with clay and as cortisol levels decrease. In turn, you’ll find that your pain related stresses gradually fade away.

Increases Happiness

Dopamine, the feel good hormone, is released when you’re doing something that you enjoy. Similarly, the level of dopamine increases as you’re engaged with others in a ceramics class, leading you to feel happier. Additionally, the release of dopamine encourages you to repeatedly join such classes especially if they bring you much joy. Happiness begets happiness and you might find yourself participating in more clay workshops.

Caption: Seeing your creation come to fruition is in itself a form of personal satisfaction. Photo Credit: @made_and_matter_ceramics on Instagram

Enhances Emotional Stability

As with other activities, making pottery enables you to stay focused and enter a mental state where you’re concentrating on your craft. Being in this mental state allows your worries and frustrations to melt away, leaving your mind focused, relaxed and expand. Heightened emotions like high blood pressure and muscle tensions will regulate at this time, allowing your emotional state to ‘reset’ and be in a state of calm. 

Reduces Certain Mental Disorders

Certain mental disorders like Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and even Clinical Depression, are the result in elevated cortisol levels. Clay throwing on a pottery wheel or hand-building ceramics can significantly reduce these cortisol levels. Therefore, it minimises symptoms that are associated with them.

Pottery Making At Tanglin Community Club (Tanglin CC)

The ceramic arts class in Tanglin CC has been held for over 10 years by trainer Mr Ong Teong Sim. His classes focuses on the learning of different types of clays, clay structuring and moulding as well as techniques like coiling, slab building, throwing, glazing and firing. Students can express their creativity through the art form and are allowed to craft anything their imagination leads them to. You do not need any prior knowledge before attending the class as it will encompass the basic processes and techniques of clay making. 

Dabbling with pottery is easy at Tanglin Community Club (Tanglin CC). It has an aircon studio with clay firing facilities and equipped for a hand-building class. It also comes with clay firing facilities. This makes pottery learning easy and fuss-free. The electric kiln in the studio fires clay at high temperatures. There are two processes of firing clay. One such process is Bisque Firing. This process fires clay at 900 to 950 degree Celsius and there is no use of colour. Gloss Firing is another process that fires clay at 1080 to 1220 degree Celsius, depending on the glaze and usage of pieces.

With a well-equipped pottery studio fitted with an electric kiln, kickstarting your journey with ceramics at Tanglin CC is easy! Currently, adults are able to join the classes. Parent-child classes are in the pipeline! For more information, visit https://www.onepa.gov.sg/cc/tanglin-cc.

Tanglin Community Club

245 Whitley Road, Singapore 297829

[email protected]

+65 6251 3922