156-b: EARLY SLEEPING BETTER PERFORMANCE

Athletes have to go to bed extra  early every night  the week before a major competition. Going to bed two hours earlier seven days long can improve performance in a muscle persevering test.

Sometimes athletes sleep too little, for example because of long flights or full competition schedules.  A lack of sleep can have a negative effect on performance. It is not entirely clear what is the explanation for this. It is possible for athletes to feel tired from lack of sleep, and that this feeling causes them to do every effort at a lower intensity or to stop the effort earlier. Another theory is that a shortage of sleep hinders the control of the muscles from the brains. It is not exactly known if sleeping in advance, so plenty of sleep before an expected lack of sleep is useful. Despite the following.

SLEEP IN ADVANCE IMPROVES PERFORMANCE

French research shows that a week extra sleeps causes people to be able to sustain longer a maximal muscle test for the upper legs. For this test, they had to make an effort of about 12 minutes with 10 to 15 percent of their maximum strength.

When the men went to sleep for a week every day at nine o’clock instead of eleven o’clock, and they were tested again then they persevered about one minute longer. This amounted to a performance improvement of about 8 percent. Even after the men were kept awake all night, they performed better with the extra sleep, and they felt less fatigued.

The researchers wondered whether the maximal muscle test improvement persevering time with unfatigued men was due to improved muscle control. If they stimulated the muscles from the outside, however, no effect of more or less sleep can be observed.  The researchers therefore concluded that the improved performance was not due to improved muscle control but the fact that the men felt less tired if they had slept extra in advance.

CONCLUSION

People prove to hold a particular effort for longer if they feel less tired. Their feeling of fatigue can be influenced by them to sleep in advance more than enough. This study is certainly not performed in athletes, but it is likely that athletes benefit from extra sleep before an expected period of sleep deprivation. Although a persevering test is not similar to most sports performance, it is likely that a reduced sense of fatigue also in sports has a positive effect on physical performance.