It seems that there are two different types of people in this world: those that nap and those that don’t nap. The art of taking a power nap is a tool that can help boost memory, cognitive function, creative skills, and energy levels. In fact, as a way to treat sleep issues, a daytime nap can help reset your entire system. Here is what you need to know to avoid the grogginess of sleeping too long and maximizing the benefits of the power nap:
Length of Nap
- A typical power nap is between 15 and 20 minutes long. This short burst of sleep lends a great boost to alertness and motor skills like typing, making it a great addition to your regular workday routine.
- If you nap more than 20 minutes, in the 30 to 60 minute zone, this type of napping is called slow-wave sleep and is a great boon for decision-making skills such as memorizing vocabulary or recalling directions.
- Next is the REM sleep. This happens with napping in the 60 to 90 minute range. Although out of the power-napping timeframe, long naps with rapid eye movement can help establish new connections in your brain and boost your creative problem solving abilities.
To make the most out of a quick snooze, try and keep a consistent nap schedule. Most people find that taking a 20 minute nap during the slump of the day, between 1 and 3pm is best for getting that extra burst of energy to make it through until the end of the day. Another rule of thumb is to set an alarm to wake up for no more than 30 minutes after you try and sleep. This is key in preventing you from falling into slow-wave sleep, which can leave you feeling groggy and wanting to sleep longer.
Last but not least, if you can find a dark room or use an eye mask, blocking out light can help you fall asleep faster thus garnering the benefits of the power nap more!