Can One ‘Bank’ Sleep In Advance

Not only one can, it, in fact, has proven to be beneficial not only for the chronic insomniacs but those indulging in majorly neurologically fatiguing exercises, as well.

Bringing the work home is passe. Nowadays, it’s more like bringing the work to bed. Then there are the traditional factors that would prevent sleep like worries and anxieties come rushing the moment we hit the pillow. Add to that, the constant engagement with tech trails in, right before the doze off time. This consumption of tech during our bedtime is hampering not only the quantity but also the quality of our sleep. All said, most people have an overwhelming grouse: not getting enough sleep. Statistics show that an average American adult nowadays gets only about six and a half hours of sleep each night with one-third of the population resorting to even less than six hours of a nightcap. There’s no need to remind anyone that consistent restorative sleep is imperative for one’s health as well as performance benefits.

Sleep Deficiency

A common knowledge doing the rounds is that one can sleep a little extra on weekends to restore sleep deficiency. Sleep deficiency, aka sleep debt, is the difference in hours of sleep that one should have corresponding to one’s age and the actual hours of sleep they are getting.

Sleep Banking

Can then the reverse be also true? That is, can we sleep a little more on weekends to offset the anticipatory sleep debt we may pile up during the succeeding week. This is being touted as sleep banking.

New research is afoot to determine the efficacy of such a potential ‘hack’, whereby one can add extra sleep before diving into a period of expected sleep reduction to counter the cognitive and physical performance which results from sleep deprivation.

Test Driving Sleep

To test out their theory, researchers studied the comparative physical performance and neuromuscular function of twelve healthy men who extended their sleep for six days before and after, one night of complete sleeplessness. It was noted that just by adding an extra two hours of sleep per night, over six days, there was a significant importing in staving off exhaustion during sustained isometric muscular contraction.

Add Two Hours For Six Days

As per the report, the decrease in the perception regarding the amount of exertion from additional sleep translated as the positive effect of sleep banking.

It was found to be so solidly beneficial that they recommended sleep banking not only for anyone who is chronically sleep-deprived but also for those who indulge in majorly neurologically fatiguing exercises, such as endurance and ultra-endurance, cross-fit athletes, and marathoners. The effects of sleep banking also proved effective on cognition values too.

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