The human body needs sleep just as much as it needs food for it to function well. Every person needs at least 7-9 hours of good sleep. Study shows that there is a direct possible link between a good night’s sleep and athletic performance. Most athletes are constantly seeking for new ways to increase their performance.
Some even go to the extent of using steroids and training harder to boost their overall performance without knowing that maintaining good sleeping habits could significantly help to improve their performance.
Here are 5 reasons why sleep is important for good athletic performance.
- Sleep deprivation reduces alertness
The lack of sleep has been shown to reduce the alertness of athletes. This consequently makes a huge difference in their overall skill and performance. When an athlete lacks enough sleep, it decreases their reaction ability during the game or performance.
Study shows that sleep deprivation has an equivalent effect on the athlete’s reaction times just like alcohol intoxication level of about 0.05%. This affects the overall accuracy of the athlete hence decline in performance as well.
- Sleeping more reduces risk of injury
Athletes who sleep for the recommended number of hours are less likely to suffer injuries. The body cells and tissues repair themselves while we sleep. Sleep is therefore a necessity especially for those athletes who are still in the budding stages of their career. While we sleep, there is improved blood flow to all parts of the body hence it repairs all the damages cells and tissues.
- Good sleep helps to increase brain functions
Athletes are encouraged to sleep on a good mattress to boost the quality of the sleep they get. This is due to the fact that, a good night’s sleep helps the brain to function more effectively. Any athlete needs to have a functioning and alert brain while on the field because it helps to plan and lay out the strategies required to win the game.
This means that an athlete uses the brain as much as he or she uses their muscles. A study that was conducted on a team of basketball players at Stanford University revealed that players whose sleeping hours were increased to 10 hours performed way better than their sleep deprived counterparts. It is therefore recommended that athletes should get adequate sleep to boost their productivity in the field.
Sleep also improves your mood and your interactions with others, particularly those who you are most close to. If you are having problems in your relationship, we recommend this article about marriage counseling.
- Adequate sleep reduces the risk of obesity
Athletes are encouraged to have enough sleep because it lowers the risk of gaining and retaining excess fat. Science has shown that people who have less sleep are more likely to be obese.
While we sleep, the body increases the rate of metabolism hence burns the excess fat. Therefore, this essentially means that sleep deprivation tends to increase the risk of suffering from conditions like obesity. Athletes are advised to have enough sleep in order to prevent gaining excess weight which might negatively impact their careers.
5. Sleep reduces the chances of getting ill
Having a good night’s rest has been shown to reduce the chances of athletes getting sick. On average, research shows that most of the people who were sleep deprived were actually three times more likely to suffer from frequent illnesses.
Athletes are therefore advised to sleep for at least 7-9 hours in order to reduce the chance of suffering from illnesses like flu which can incapacitate them. Good sleep allows the free circulation of blood throughout the body. This allows the white blood cells to help get rid of pathogens that cause diseases in our bodies hence boosting our immunity system.
It is essential to have a good night’s sleep, which is at least 7-9 hours every night. This is important for athletes because it will significantly improve their performance in the field. Good sleep increases the alertness of the brain, hence develops the cognitive skills needed in athletics.
It also helps to reduce the risk of developing illnesses like depression. Lack of sleep may cause one to easily sink into depression. Athletes need to prevent such kind of illnesses through getting enough sleep. Sleeping on a cozy mattress also helps to improve the quality of sleep. Check out Sleeping Culture to know more about different types and brands of mattress according to your needs.