What is power nap?
Mid-day sleep is termed as 'power nap'.
“A power nap is defined as a short nap during the day of about 20-30 minutes duration”, says William Deardorff, Medical Advisor for www.Spine-health.com.
Benefits of power nap:
People who regularly take mid-day naps experience decrease in drowsiness. Research has also shown that it increases your level of alertness during the day and reduces stress.
Some more advantages of mid-day naps are:
- boost in productivity at work,
- improved ability to concentrate,
- less stress,
- better reaction time,
- increased learning,
- more efficiency,
- better mood,
- better health,
- increase in stamina,
- memory improvement,
- you can avoid sleep debt by making up on your sleep deficit.
Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies found that with a nap, brain activity stays high throughout the day; but without a nap, brain activity declines over the course of a day, says Dr. Deardorff.
Research also says that taking a nap of 30 minutes during mid-day is better than sleeping 30 minutes later in the morning.
Who uses power naps:
Many busy executives who are deficient on regular night sleep make up with short naps during the day. Lance Armstrong was training for the tour-de-france bicycle race, and naps were an important part of his routine.
Many well-known personalities around the world also make use of the benefits offered by power naps, among them being Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill, Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, John D. Rockefeller, John F. Kennedy to name just a few.
If you feel drowsy on the ride from home to work or back, or if you lack energy during afternoons then try out power naps.
Power naps are especially beneficial for individuals who engage in high pressure situations such as:
- Important presentations
- Meetings with clients
- Long drives or commutes
- Complex problem solving
How long should you power nap?
The ideal time for power naps can be anywhere between 10-30 minutes. However you can take even shorter naps and wake up feeling refreshed. When Steve Fossett made his record 67-hour flight around-the-world alone in his jet, he took a couple dozen two-to-three minute naps as his only sleep, and claims that he awoke refreshed.
A longer nap of 1-2 hours can also be beneficial but you may not be able to do it on workdays, however you can make it a part of your weekend schedule.
To derive maximum long-term benefits from power naps, make it a regular habit and not just a one time thing. Napping can be good for the old as well as the young.
Folks, do not view mid-day snoozing as a habit for the lazy. Let us all embrace it.
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