The 1 Daytime Activity That Ensures Better Sleep Is Actually Very Simple

Sleep is something many of us struggle with. In fact, according to YouGov, one in five Brits have problems falling asleep a few nights a week, while 15% experience this once or twice a week. Additionally, four in ten have issues getting to sleep a few times a month.

These stats are a little grim but they make sense, right? There’s a certain point of adulthood we all reach where we find ourselves repeatedly uttering the words: “I’m SO tired” and if you’re really lucky, this will end up being a competition with your pals over who is the tiredest and who has had the least sleep.

Plus, who is actually getting a good sleep? What is their secret? Lavender? Blackout blinds? Earplugs?

Well, maybe. But according to a new study from the University Of Texas At Austin, the secret to getting better sleep is a lot more simple than that and honestly, it’s so simple that it’s kind of annoying.

How to sleep better, according to science

The study found that increased physical activity lengthened the time it takes to enter the REM stage. The researchers believe that this is because exercise helps to consolidate deeper sleep stages before REM. According to Futurity, this is essential as it gives our brain time to settle into deep sleep before REM, which is when we tend to have vivid dreams and our brains seem to be as active as they are when we’re awake.

Before now, some scientific studies backed by anecdotal evidence suggested that exercising regularly brought on better sleep but, for this study, researchers chose a different environment to conduct their work in to determine that this was definitely the solution to our sleep woes.

According to Futurity, until now, studies had been conducted in lab settings and conclusions were drawn from just one night’s sleep. Futurity added that these limited methodologies are ‘problematic’ for any study.

Instead, the research team opted to ask the 82 participants to use advanced wearable technology to track their sleep and activity levels. This tracker recorded both movement and heart rate, meaning that researchers could identify periods of deep sleep along with physical activity to determine the relationship between the two.

Speaking on the study, co-author of the study and chair of the psychology department, David M. Schnyer said: “The world is your oyster now. You can use this device to study all manner of different sleep architecture data related to lifestyle—related to mood and mood disorders—in the field, not in a lab, that people might have thought was not possible previously.”

So not only is it true that the more we move, the better sleep we’ll get but also, sleep studies have now progressed to a stage where participants can be more accurately monitored.

Looks like we may have a lot of exciting new sleep studies ahead.