Power Naps: Benefits and How To Do It
Power naps or midday siestas are common in various countries like Spain and Italy. But not everyone is used to taking afternoon naps. Are power naps beneficial? What are the benefits, and how to take a proper power nap? Let us quickly explore!
What is a Power Nap?
Power naps are short revitalising naps that usually range from 10 to 30 minutes. These naps can help us maintain our sleep cycles better. That’s because we all have different types of lifestyles and obligations, which can reduce our daily recommended night sleep by 7 to 8 hours.
Whether we are morning or night people, power naps can fulfil the lack of sleep by letting us rest for a short time during the active hours. A quick nap after lunch might be the best, as sleeping too late in the day can hamper your night’s sleep.
What is the perfect time of day for a power nap?
The ideal time for a power nap is typically in the early afternoon, around 1-3 p.m. This is because our natural circadian rhythm tends to have a slight dip in alertness and energy during this period, making it easier to fall asleep quickly and achieve the most refreshing nap. Limiting the nap duration to around 10-20 minutes helps avoid grogginess upon waking. However, individual preferences and schedules may vary, so it’s important to experiment and find the time that works best for you.
Power Nap Benefits
Our body has a natural sleep cycle, which lasts for 90 minutes, usually. And it has several phases, such as deep sleep, light sleep, etc. Power naps are short and don’t put you in a deep sleep. That’s why you don’t wake up feeling groggy from power naps. That’s not all; a power nap is highly beneficial in multiple other ways, which are listed below:
- Power naps can recharge you with a high energy level if you’re fatigued
- If you slept less yesterday, a power nap could fulfil the minimum sleeping hours
- Power naps can elevate your mood if you’re feeling tired and bored
- Your focus and concentration power will elevate with daily power naps
- Power naps can improve your short-term memory to a great level
- Your reaction time will boost naturally if you take power naps daily
Who Are Power Naps Best for
If you sleep for at least 7-8 hours daily without any disturbances and wake up feeling fresh, a power nap isn’t for you. Moreover, you don’t need power naps if you feel energetic throughout the day without drowsiness. But, if you are sleep deprived and feel tired or groggy in the afternoon, a power nap is the best for you.
Power naps can do wonders for people in some professions where there’s a consecutive lack of sleep. For example, night shift workers need to stay awake the whole night. Or, doctors and drivers need to avoid drowsiness between work for safety reasons.
How to Take a Power Nap
For some people, power naps are no big deal. But, for others, it’s a process of trial and error. If you belong to the second group, here’s how to power nap easily:
Set an Alarm
First, you need to set the alarm so that you don’t end up sleeping for three hours and wake up feeling frustrated.
Make it Early
Power naps are best when taken in the early afternoon i.e. before 3 p.m. That’s because putting yourself to sleep at night can be difficult if you take a power nap in the evening.
Set the Stage
Just like your night’s sleep, your power nap needs a peaceful and dark environment. So, make sure you prepare the ambience first.
Naps Versus Coffee
Coffee contains caffeine which is a natural central nervous system stimulant that helps in fighting fatigue and drowsiness. Some people have a habit of consuming coffee before taking power naps known as Coffee Naps or Caffeine Naps. As the caffeine gets absorbed into their body, it helps them to wake up fresh. Whether this method will work for you or not depends on how coffee works on your body.
Power naps vs. meditation
Power naps and meditation are two distinct techniques for rejuvenation and mental well-being. Power naps are brief periods of sleep, usually lasting 10-30 minutes, aimed at boosting energy levels and enhancing cognitive function. They can provide a quick recharge and increase alertness.
On the other hand, meditation involves focusing attention and achieving a state of mindfulness, often through deep breathing or mantra repetition. It promotes relaxation, stress reduction, and mental clarity. Meditation can help cultivate a calm and centered mind, improving emotional resilience and overall mental health. While power naps offer a rapid energy boost, meditation provides a deeper sense of tranquility and self-awareness. Both practices have their benefits, and the choice depends on the desired outcome and available time.
Now that you know how to take a power nap and stay at a high energy level, go ahead and give it a try. But make sure you maintain the ideal time of 10-30 minutes.
Is a power nap healthy?
Yes, there are lots of benefits of a power nap, which include high energy, sharp memory, and increased creativity- to name a few.
Are naps good for weight loss?
There’s no medical evidence proving that naps are good for weight loss. But, other things, such as a healthy diet and proper sleep, can aid in weight loss.
Is a power nap better than no sleep?
Yes, a power nap is always better than no sleep. Your body needs some rest if you’re deprived of sleep, and a power nap does the same.
Is a 20-minute power nap worth it?
Yes, a 20-minute power nap is the ideal nap length, as opined by health experts. From a 20-minute power nap, you’ll get all the above-mentioned benefits.
Is a 30-minute power nap good?
Well, a 30-minute power nap is good, but it shouldn’t exceed that time. Thirty minutes is the maximum time for a power nap.
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