With gold medals flying all over the place, we’re so excited that the summer 2021 Olympics have officially started – and so we can all join in.
Okay, let’s face it… most of us will never be able to run, jump, or swim as fast as the athletic stars on the Olympics, but there’s one thing that we can definitely get onboard with – sleep! (Gold medal standard of course).
When it comes to athletes, a healthy sleep schedule is equally as important as training and diet. An athlete’s mind and muscles need a reprieve after a long and strenuous day of practicing. In fact, sleep is so essential that it is often incorporated into their daily training routine.
Exactly how much sleep does an Olympic athlete need?
This may come as a slight surprise, but Olympic athletes need seven to nine hours of sleep per night – about the same amount as an average person!
The interest athletes and their trainers have taken in the effects of sleep has increased over the past few years. This is because as a society we are learning the important part sleep plays in a healthy routine.
Lack of sleep increases fatigue, disrupts focus, and hinders muscle and brain recovery. For athletes, this is especially important, we couldn’t imagine running 5k tired let a lot an entire marathon!
If you are training for upwards of six to seven hours a day, your body is likely to be extremely exhausted. So essentially if an athlete restricts themselves from sleep, they will experience poor focus and decreased energy when it’s time for their big event.
Olympic standard sleep strategies:
Of course, the right sleep environment helps massively when it comes to getting enough sleep. Our top tips for creating the best environment for sleep are below:
Proper dimmed lighting, noise control or cancellation, and temperature control can help relax your body and signal that it’s time to sleep.
Keep your lights low, but not pitch black. Cool your room down with fans or an air conditioner, and drown out any surrounding noise with a noise cancellation machine.
Adopt a night-time routine, including a relaxing before-bed walk, reading a book, and decreasing screen time.
Comfortable mattresses and beds also play a huge role in how Olympian’s sleep. An uncomfortable bed can prevent a great night’s sleep. In fact, our brand ambassador Jessica Ennis-Hill agrees and we have an entire range dedicated to a great night’s sleep – Jessica Collection.
There’s no reason you should sacrifice a good night’s sleep – especially if a gold medal is on the line.