Prym Ergonomics Knitting Needle Review

You may remember I mentioned a while back that I’d been give a pair of Prym Ergonomic needles. Not by Prym themselves, and I’ve no vested interest in reviewing. I’m just reviewing to share what I personally found. I also showed these needles to 3 friends, so I’ll throw in the odd comment from them too.

My point of view comes from someone who usually, but not exclusively,  knits on wooden needles that are 5mm or less and a maximum of 30cm long. I like wood because it’s warmer to the touch, less slippy than metal and gentler on your hands. If I have sufficient stitches to need a longer needle than 30cm, I switch to circulars, because this puts less strain on my wrists. I don’t have any problems with my hands, just know knitting can cause RSI, so do my best to knit in a way that’s kind to my hands.

The Prym needles I have are a pair of 35cm x 4mm ergonomics. 20170823_112854(0)

They are a plastic needle with a small bobble at the tip leading to a short 4mm section…

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… the shaft then becomes slimmer and triangular…

20170823_113024  Checking out several dictionary definitions of the word ‘ergonomic’, I found it’s meaning boiled down to two things: Something that is ergonomic is designed to be both efficient and comfortable. Since most of my decisions on knitting needles appear to be about comfort, let’s start there…

Comfort

(There are no claims about comfort on the prym box)

  • They feel warm and very pleasant to the touch
  • I and my friends concluded that unless you were knitting something small, the growing weight of the knitting would make them bend and hang uncomfortably. We however think a shorter pair might not draw this criticism.
  • I found the triangular shaft – which is smaller than 4mm – needed a tighter grip than a 4mm shaft and therefore increased tension in my hands.
  • I also found the triangular ridges annoying. However, the triangular part isn’t all the way to the top, so how you would feel about that would depends on the way you hold the needles when you knit.

Efficient…

Quite frankly I found them a nightmare to knit with, because they bent as I knitted. Definitely not quicker! My friends also found them bendy, but then I tried knitting continental style and they didn’t bend!

The box says that the tips have a ‘hook tip’ for ‘simple picking up and safe guidance of yarn’….

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… and the triangular shaft ‘allows stitches to freely slide over the needle’.

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Websites selling these needles say these two features make knitting easier for beginners and quicker for experienced knitters.

In my view the bobble may make knitting easier for those beginners who tend to drop stitches and perhaps the slimmer shaft may help those who have incredibly tight tension – provided they don’t try to form the stitches on the shaft. (The section that is the full 4mm isn’t very long and I have read a review from an experienced knitter who said her knitting style formed the stitches on the shaft, therefore creating small tight stitches.)

Personally I’m not convinced that the bobble on the end and a triangular shaft would make experienced knitters knit faster. I would have gone all nerdy and timed myself, but because the needles bend as I knit that slows me down anyway.

And what about knitting lace or socks? I like a very slim smooth point for these. Wouldn’t the bobble hamper rather than help?

I did read at one point that the triangular shaft prevented ‘snagging’ and wondered if the author of the comment normally knitted on twigs.

The clip together heads

It’s a neat idea that the heads clip to the tips to help stop your stitches falling off when you’re not knitting.

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Unfortunately the realities aren’t so great:

  1. The clip doesn’t hold the needles very firmly together and they come apart with the minimum of movement.
  2. Once they’re clipped together you can’t stick the needles into your ball of yarn, so the ball is free to roam around, unwind and get tangled.

I hate to be so negative, and maybe I would have found more positive in a shorter thicker pair, or a thicker pair of circulars or DPNs?

Have you tried Prym Ergonomics? And if so, what do you think of them?

21 thoughts on “Prym Ergonomics Knitting Needle Review

    1. You’re welcome. As I said, I was given them, so gave them a go. Threy certainly didn’t call to me to buy them before that and I did find myself wondering if the person who invented them had ever done any knitting.

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  1. Good, honest evaluation! I haven’t tried them, and never intended to – I love my needles – I use circulars almost exclusively, and love my fixed addis and my interchangeable knitpicks. Having read this review, I think I will just stick with them. 🙂

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  2. Thank you. I have to say I didn’t like being so negative, when clearly someone thinks these are a good idea. (So how much harder is it to write a negative review when you’ve been sent something to review and perhaps some extra goodies too?) But I really don’t rate them and nor did anyone else I know who tried them. They do make circulars though and I’d be curious to give them a go, since several of my problems with the pair I had wouldn’t exist in a pair of circulars.

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  3. I’ve not heard of them – but then I’m nor looking to buy any new needles currently. They sound like a nightmare! When I looked at the photo I thought it was showing a particularly small crochet hook tip and briefly wondered if the inventor got his handcrafts mixed up 🙂 Do like a good honest review!

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  4. I don’t think I would be tempted to try them, casting on must be hard with the narrow point. But oh did I hear yarn cruelty, ……sticking your needles into the ball. Somewhere in the dim recess of my mind do I recall being told never to do this as it wrecks the wool? Certainly I don’t do this because I think this!

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    1. I didn’t find the shape of the tip caused casting on problems, but we all have different techniques. No one has ever told me not to stick needles in wool and my wool never looks like it’s suffered. But I see your point, you could split some types of yarn. I’ll listen for a squeak next time I shove them in 😉

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  5. Thank you for an open and honest point of view. 🙂 They do not look very pleasing or easy to use. The fact that they are plastic would probably make me think twice, as I prefer wood / metal, depending on the project, etc. Bent needles are not really comfy either for me, as I try and reshape them back to straight all the time. Which does not really happen.
    Thanks for all the information on these. I appreciate it.

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  6. Thank you very much for your review. We received a lot of positive feedback regarding our ergonomic knitting needles but that depends on the knitting preferences. Nonetheless, we’re taking your feedback seriously and it helps us to optimize our knitting needles!

    Best regards
    Your Prym Team

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  7. Jackie

    This was an interesting review. I must admit I don’t like plastic needles and rarely use single pointed needles as I have Fibromyalgia and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and spns are inherently unbalanced. Despite your criticisms I am tempted to give the circulars a go.

    From what I’ve seen these needles are kind of Marmite needles (you know, you love them or hate ’em and must admit I fall into the hate Marmite category, but love my Hiya Hiya circs due to the lightweight needles). I have used Knit Pro Cubics which are square and use thick pencils which are triangular (easier to grip with pain), so the triangular shape is less of an issue for me. What is the biggest disincentive is the plastic – and the fact that they don’t seem widely available. I thought it was interesting that there was a difference with the feel of them between continental and English/Scottish-style knitting. I wonder with Prym being a German company whether they didn’t bother to test on English-style knitters.

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    1. Hello. Thanks for your thoughts. Sorry to hear you have Fibromyalgiab and carpal tunnel – but great to hear thy’re not stopping you knitting. The length of the needles definitely worked against them and I did think a shorter or circular pair might be better. The plastic would certainly put me off too – for environmental reasons, I can happily knit on vintage plastic needles. Although Prym may well not have tested British knitting – after all these needles seem to be designed by engineers rather that someone who loves knitting – the thought of trying to knit continental with any weight on the pair I tried makes my toes curl. They would have bent and stressed the wrists no end. (I can knit continental, but I prefer British.) Like you say though, it’s like marmite and if you feel as if they may work for you maybe you can borrow a pair from somewhere and give them a go? Or look for a cheap pair coming up on ebay?

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