Importance of Napping

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The Importance of Napping

In the article, "Sleep. Who needs it?" the author, Phyllida Brown set out to find the effectiveness of napping. Brown also wanted to find specifics on napping such as how long and how many. She briefly followed the journey of one man, Nick Moloney, to find the answer to these questions. Brown also studied research to give readers a better understanding of these concepts. To understand napping, one must at least vaguely understand sleep stages. Stage 1 is when you begin to feel groggy, drowsy, and begin transitioning. Stage 2 sleep is known as "first proper sleep". From stage 2 you begin slow wave or delta sleep, also known as stage 3 and 4. Then you begin Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep. Nick Moloney, an Australian yacht racer, gives powerful first hand insight into how dangerous sleep deprivation can be. While competing in a race in 1999, he found himself in a deadly position. He was trapped beneath his yacht in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Although his boat eventually righted it self, he was forced to withdraw from the race. Moloney was certain that sleep deprivation was the culprit in that disaster. After this incident, he began working with scientists to perfect his sleeping patterns. He wanted maximum performance for the least amount of sleep. As a result of their findings, he was able to win the two week solo Route de Rhum race three years later. A 10 to 15 minute nap will give you a quick boost without allowing you to fall into slow wave sleep. Awakening in the middle of slow wave sleep can cause sleep inertia, which is that groggy feeling you get that you just can't seem to shake off. If you want to try a longer nap of 45 minutes or more, be sure that you have about 20 minutes to wake up properly. Scientists have also found that the time in which you take your nap also affects the usefulness of your nap. Most people find it easy to nap around 2-3pm, as opposed to 8am or 6pm. As humans, we all have internal time clocks...
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