A recent Sports Innovation Summit in Canada sought to maximise an athlete’s performance by kicking back, relaxing and letting the adaptations flow over you. Sleep expert Charles Samuels, of Calgary’s Centre for Sleep and Human Performance, delivered a speech that emphasised the importance of napping with practical tips for age-groupers of all abilities.
The key message is that you don’t need to sleep to benefit from napping, but you do need to ideally lie down, close your eyes and breathe deeply. It’s all about resting and refreshing the brain. If this doesn’t feel like it’s working, try meditation.
Length of naps, or meditation, is between 15-30mins and ideally timed around 12hrs out from the middle of your night’s sleep. So if you hit the sack at 10pm and wake up at 6am, you’re looking at 2pm. It’s also a prudent idea to knock back a coffee prior to your nap to help the wake-up process.
If you need say 60 or 90mins, do it. But if grogginess persists, you’re likely to have chronic sleep deficit.