Consider this article your Nap-Nav, directing you through the different types of naps to ensure you are receiving the maximum benefit from your napping habits.
Mind Breaks (5-10 minutes)
Napping isn’t just about sleeping, it’s about giving your body a chance to recover both mentally and physically. Mind breaks are perfect for this. No one has time in their day to take a nap every 90 minutes, however we all have time to fit in regular mind breaks. All a mind break requires you to do is unplug from your work (and your phone) and take 5-10 minutes for yourself to refresh your mind. They are a great way to break up your day and ensure you are approaching your tasks refreshed and ready to work.
Power Naps (10-30 minutes)
Power naps are ideal for re-energising in a working environment, combining a limited time commitment with increased performance and alertness. Due to their length, power naps limit you to the lighter stages of sleep, this allows your energy levels to restore without the grogginess associated with waking up from longer naps. While a power nap can vary in length from 10-30 minutes NASA suggest 26 minutes is the ideal time period for a power nap. These naps are best suited to 1pm-3pm when you have a natural slump, giving you the boost you need to power through the afternoon. Power naps are ideal if you are looking to create a nap-friendly workplace in order to advance your business.
Long Naps (45-60 Minutes)
Long naps are a double-edged sword. They include slow wave sleep, the deepest type of sleep and therefore provide increased cognitive and physical benefits. As a result,long naps provide the largest improvement in remembering facts, names, and faces. The downside is they can leave you feeling groggy for sometime after, because you are forcing your body to wake up as it begins to enter deep sleep. So it’s probably best to give this one a miss before your big meeting.
Full sleep cycle (90 Minutes)
This takes you through a full sleep cycle, meaning both lighter, slow wave & REM sleep. Sleeping for this long boosts memory and creativity. Plus because you wake up at the end of a sleep cycle so you avoid the grogginess which comes with long naps. Hurray! The only major downside is fitting it into your schedule, meaning they aren’t best suited to the working world.
Hopefully this Nap-Nav will help you reach your destination of wellbeing & productivity in the right way for you.