Are you one of the many humans who can’t focus well and tired around midafternoon? It is quite common. UNsure if it is your from circadian rhythm or age. Napping is a solution, documented that a quick midday snooze can benefit your mental and physical performance. Don’t believe me, then why is the US Army for the first time ever encouraging soldiers to take a nap? You can find it in the Army new fitness training manual. This may have resulted from a study in cadets reported in July 2018.
Restorative, a quick 30 min nap could get you an edge on an intense workout, or a big game. Yes NBA & NFL teams swear by pregame naps. Also, it has been found to improve your mental performance before an important meeting or function.
The science comes from yet another study supporting this valuable ‘habit’. A study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Excercise examined karate athletes. Random 30 min naps or no naps followed by measurements of capabilities found naps gave athletes a measurable and significant improved alertness.
I was unable to find the best duration for an effective nap but the literature suggests 25-45 minutes. A study in napping and performance in 5-meter shuttle run test compared 25,35,45 min naps before practice and competition. Results point to as much as a 9% improvement when a 45 min. nap was taken!
I have been talking about mental and physical performance for which a nap helps healthy individuals. If you are always tired and needing frequent napping it may be the result of a health issue. Worth a talk to your healthcare provider.