Take a (Power) Nap! Part 1

Photo courtesy of beckwanderer.com

by Rey Beltran | www.vigorbuddy.com

Napping is nature’s way of rejuvenating our bodies even for a short time. That’s why there are power naps to speak of. When you wake up after a short nap, you feel energized and refreshed, giving you that needed boost to finish whatever task is at hand.

85% of mammals are polyphasic sleepers, meaning they sleep for short periods of time throughout the day. We humans are monophasic sleepers, because we divide the day into two periods, one for sleep and one for wakefulness.

As the world progresses, we become busy and usually find ourselves deprived of that much needed sleep. And napping is usually our solution to “catch up” on those lost hours of rest. It is observed that a short nap of 20-30 minutes can help improve our mood, alertness and performance. Frequent nappers need not be embarrassed; you’re in good company as the following personalities are known to value afternoon naps: Winston Churchill, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, Napoleon, Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, and George W. Bush.

3 Types of Naps

Yes, you read that right. There are 3 types of naps.

Planned Nap

This is when you take a nap before you actually get sleepy. Planned Naps are handy in times when you have to stay up later than your usual bed time. It is also a way to ward off getting tired early on. What’s great about it, is you are looking forward to this respite so you’ve already psyched yourself that when the appointed time comes, your mind and body is prepared to rest and take that nap.

Emergency Nap

This is when you’re so tired you cannot function anymore. You usually have naps when you’re drowsily driving, or when you’re using heavy equipment. Listen to your body and you’re better for it. Taking a nap before that long drive is one way to ensure you’ll be wide awake (add to that, a cup of strong coffee).

Habitual Nap

As the name suggests, you take a nap at the same time every single day… just like children do in the afternoons. Or when you take naps after lunch each day. People are creatures of habit. And if this is a part of their routine, chances are, they derive the benefits of napping regularly.

Now that you know these types, choose the one that’s applicable to you. That way, you can schedule your power naps efficiently, and have that deep sleep effectively.

(Watch out for part 2 of this article where tips and other information about napping will be featured. Parts of this article were lifted from sleepfoundation.org.)