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Ancient Sleep Patterns

Did you remember that it was World Sleep Day on March 15th or were you too busy living your life to pause and reflect on the importance of sleep?
Here at Futon Company sleep is always something that’s top of mind – how to get enough, how to balance it with work and an active social life, and ultimately how to create sleep spaces that create the optimal environment for getting the recommended 7-8 hours of shut-eye each night.

So when we came across some comments from celebrity chef Nigella Lawson on her approach to sleep we were intrigued. According to an interview in a women’s magazine she’s often in bed by 7.30pm and sleeps in two hour bursts. In between sleep she gets up, potters around the house, makes tea and then goes back to bed for another two hour sleep. This approach clearly flies in the face of the recommended sleep patterns, so is it a bad thing? No, according to experts including Dr Max Pemberton. In fact, they say, this way of sleeping is more in keeping with historic kipping!

Called biphasic sleep patterns, the approach adopted by our ancestors was to sleep for four hours, get up, go about their daily business then go back to sleep for another four hours. In fact, prayer manuals from the 15th century even stipulated specific prayers for the waking hours between sleeps.

Monophasic sleep, which describes the eight hours currently deemed as acceptable is a relatively new concept which developed as a result of various social factors including the Industrial Revolution.

Fast forward to 2019, sleep is a modern obsession: are we getting enough, how to get enough, what happens when we don’t get enough and so forth. Perhaps we should take a lesson from our ancient ancestors!

Meanwhile, check out our range of sleep-supportive beds and mattresses. Here are a few ideas to get you started….

Deep Sleep Bed Mattress


Platform Kingsize Bed


Loop Double Bed

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