When it comes to getting a good night’s sleep, most people will stop at nothing to achieve that goal. However, new research has found that it’s more to do with the type of exercise performed as opposed to the amount.
Obviously, we are talking here about natural sleep and not the type induced by medication such as valium or other sleep aids. Indeed, many believe that a natural night’s sleep ensures one feels refreshed and raring to go when they get up in the morning.
Some researchers now believe that while exercise is key to good night’s sleep, the type of exercise determines how well or how badly they will sleep.
A new study, headed up by Dr. Michael Grandner from the University of Pennsylvania, found that running, doing yoga, playing golf, and gardening are the best types of exercise for sleep, while doing chores around the house and caring for children are less effective.
As Dr. Grandner said to reporters regarding the research, “Not only does this study show that those who get exercise simply by walking are more likely to have better sleep habits, but these effects are even stronger for more purposeful activities, such as running and yoga, and even gardening and golf. It was also interesting that people who receive most of their activity from housework and childcare were more likely to experience insufficient sleep – we know that home and work demands are some of the main reasons people lose sleep.”
The study was carried out by analyzing the sleep patterns of around half a million adults, focusing on the number of hours sleep they had a night. This was compared to what type of exercise those people did on a daily basis.
Grandner added, ‘These results are consistent with the growing scientific literature on the role of sleep in human performance. Lab studies show that lack of sleep is associated with poor physical and mental performance, and this study shows us that this is consistent with real-world data as well. Since these results are correlational, more studies are needed to help us understand whether certain kinds of physical activity can actually improve or worsen sleep, and how sleep habits help or hurt a person’s ability to engage in specific types of activity.”
[Image credit: doctoroz.com]