The Art and Science of Fitness | A midday snooze can optimize your productivity – Hindustan Times

It is a belief in today’s society that sleeping, especially daytime sleeping, is a sign of laziness. But many people don’t know that before the widespread use of the light bulb, people typically slept in two to three sessions, about 12 hours. With the advent of 9-5 jobs and artificial lighting, the norm turned to a one-hour 7-9 night shift. Unfortunately, this new form cannot be natural to us, and we cannot know how it affects our products.

In order to fall asleep at the right time, it is necessary to understand the physiological sleep movement first. (Shutterstock)

I spoke with Dr Manvir Bhatia, senior neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at the Sleep Neurology Centre, Delhi, and vice-president, Indian Society for Sleep Research about the role of midday sleep. “There are certain benefits of midday rest that refresh us and make us more productive. There are two issues that we must take care of very carefully so that we can rest most of them during the quiet time of the day and take the duration of sleepiness.

A study published earlier this year in ” British Journal of Sports Medicine entitled “Is daytime inactivity an effective strategy to improve cognitive and physical performance and reduce fatigue? looking at this very thing. This study was led by Dr Arthur Eumann Mesas from Spain and consisted of team members from Chile, Brazil and Uruguay.

They looked at 3,421 published research studies on the topic and shortlisted 22 of them based on strictly high quality research criteria. These studies were conducted in Tunisia, France, the UK, Japan, Thailand and Australia. It is comforting to see this truly international band.

These 22 studies involved a total of 291 male participants, including 164 trained athletes and 127 physically active non-athletes who engaged in exercise and sports for 7 hours per week. The ages of the participants ranged from 18 to 35 years. However, it is important to note that the lack of female study participants is a major limitation, as sleep patterns and benefits may differ significantly between men and women due to hormonal differences. Additionally, it was more convenient to include participants of a wider age range, especially those over 35, which is when sleep is more difficult for some people.

Now we know about sleep medicine, as Dr. Bhatia also pointed out, the positive effects of sleeping during sports activities during the day and the level of fatigue perceived in those who sleep enough at night, and with partial sleep deprivation. But it comes back to Dr. Bhatia’s two points: The time and the length of time he slept during the day.

The study found the following: Post-lunch leisure at noon, at about 14:00, lasting 30 to 60 minutes was found to promote great beneficial effects on physical performance (for example, to promote strength, endurance, distance, power). a moderate improvement in cognitive activity (eg reaction time, short-term memory, attention, concentration) and a decrease in perceived fatigue or tiredness after sports activity. Another finding was that it could be more convenient to sleep during the afternoon in doing sports, to have a minimum time interval of 60 minutes from falling asleep and doing physical activity, also called the washing time.

The benefits mentioned above were observed primarily in individuals who maintained a normal sleep of 7-9 hours per night. But those who experienced partial sleep deprivation showed even better results. Since research is limited in this area, the present argument is not conclusive. It must be emphasized that resting during the day alone will not compensate for a poor night’s sleep.

table et al the effects of sleep deprivation are emphasized. “Sleep deprivation promotes neurocognitive deficits, dysregulation of physiological functions regulated by the circadian rhythm (eg temperature, blood pressure), and incomplete muscle recovery, which can accumulate in long-term partial sleep loss (restriction or deprivation period).

A good example of someone who benefited from the southern naps of John F. Kennedy. He suffered long back pain for the last few years of his life. He was a hardworking president who tried to make the world a better place. In the morning, he exercises and swims when he gets to his job. After his meal, he was going to be asked not to be disturbed when he took a 1-2 hour nap. Waking up, JFK would take his second shower and resume work, fully refreshed, until about 8 p.m.

Then there was Thomas Edison, who was known to sleep 3-4 hours at night, but what most people didn’t know was that he took a long nap during the day. The world knows him to give us a light bulb – but the idea was stolen. What he certainly did, like most successful entrepreneurs, was monetizing electricity by creating an electric meter and charging people for their use. Those quiet afternoons helped him produce, whether his ideas were original or not.

In the study, the benefits of midday rest were found to be more prominent in physically active adults compared to trained athletes. table et al it is necessary to note that the margin for improvement in physical performance is smaller in practicing athletes, who have a higher basal level due to a more moderate usual training and rest schedule, than in non-athletes. “It is also necessary to emphasize that professional athletes report worse sleep quality and hygiene than a comparable group of non-athletes. Thus, the presence of long sleep-related problems may represent an obstacle to the potential beneficial effects of inhalation on physical performance.

In order to fall asleep at the right time, it is necessary to understand the physiological sleep movement first.

sleep is resolved: The average sleep cycle is 90 minutes long. Ideally, there are 4-6 rounds of sleep each night. The first cycle is usually 70-100 minutes. The second cycle and beyond are 90-120 minutes long.

Do not make random eye movements

Stage 1: 1-7 minutes

Stage 2: 10-25 minutes

Stage 3: 20-40 minutes – in the first round of sleep, it is longer and takes less time than running sleep

Random Eye Movements

Stage 4: 10-60 minutes – it takes longer than the advanced sleep cycle

Based on this knowledge, Dr. Bhatia advises that when taking a nap, it should not be longer than 15-20 minutes. You will not enter the stage 3 sleep and wake up refreshed and ready to go on with life. table et al to agree “Short sleep allows for superficial levels of sleep, which would be enough for partial relaxation.

So why is it better to sleep 30 to 60 minutes longer in the afternoon, if it is affordable? table et al suggest, “I fall asleep of a longer duration, with more time spent in sleep at higher levels, in order to mitigate the perception of fatigue and physical and mental fatigue required by the game activity.

Dr Bhatia highlighted the problem of feeling irritable and groggy in the afternoon. To mitigate this effect, Mesas et al suggest a minimum interval of one hour between waking up from sleep and engaging in work, exercise, or recreational activities to get the most benefit from sleep. The approach addresses the beneficial consequences of sleep inactivity and increases the body’s performance to a better level.

Another point Dr Bhatia raised was about midday sleep. “If he slept closer to the later part of the day, it disturbs the night’s sleep.This was again called Mesa’s successful study. The best time to take a midday nap was found to be just after lunch, around 2pm.

If you’re wondering how you manage to get sleep in the chaos of our busy lives, you should learn a thing or two from the legendary Napoleon Bonaparte. vigorous and most intent on military campaigns, but he was also gifted with the ability to take short naps in the very south of the field, not even being disturbed by the noise of artillery.

Take home the message: If you can afford it, especially if you work at home, take a 30- to 60-minute midday rest around 2 p.m. right after lunch. Expect to perform at your mental and physical level after about an hour of waking up. However, for most of us, a 15-minute time slot around 2 pm is enough. However, it is necessary that the night’s sleep is not deceived. However, it is necessary that the night’s sleep is not deceived.

Laugh and smile. And when you get it, you take a short sleep, like a rabbit.

Dr. Rajat Chauhan ( is the author of The Pain Handbook: The Non-Surgical Way to Manage Back, Neck and Knee Pain; MoveMint Medicine: Your journey to Peak Health and La Ultra: bed at 5, 11 & 22 kms in 100 days

He writes a weekly column, exclusively for HT Premium readers, that breaks down the science of exercise and exercise.

Opinions are personal

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Ava Grey

Hi there! I'm Ava Grey, an enthusiastic article writer with a passion for the arts, fashion, and staying informed about current events. As a journalism student at the New York Academy of Art, I'm driven to use my writing to create positive change and spark meaningful conversations. I'm particularly interested in contemporary art and sustainable fashion, and I love exploring how people use these mediums to express themselves and communicate their values. I believe that staying informed and hearing different perspectives is essential for personal growth and learning, and I'm always eager to engage in lively debates and discussions.

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