I don’t know if you’re the same, but I never sleep as well in summer. It may be the light evenings & mornings; it may be the absence of a heavy duvet. And let’s be honest, none of us feel great when we lack sleep. I’m always preaching the benefits of a good night’s sleep in allowing our bodies to recover & repair. But why?
Overuse injuries are a common occurrence, especially in anyone active or sporting. Sleep quality directly affects the body's ability to repair damaged tissues, tendons, and ligaments. Consistently getting good sleep allows the body to recover from these microtraumas sustained during activity, and reduces the risk of chronic injuries. In addition, regular good sleep affects hormone regulation, which influences appetite, metabolism, and stress – all of which have an effect on soft tissue healing.
On the flip side, sleep deprivation compromises muscle function, reduces reaction time, impairs co-ordination, and decreases overall physical endurance. These factors can increase the likelihood of accidents and injuries during sports or daily activities.
So, whether you’re a serious athlete, weekend warrior, or enjoy being active, good sleep facilitates optimal performance and helps injury prevention. But if you’re struggling to sleep well, what can you do to help?
1. Consistency - Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends, to regulate your internal sleep-wake cycle.
2. Build your nest – it should be comfortable, cool, dark & quiet.
3. Avoid blue light (screens!) before bed as they inhibit your melatonin (sleep hormone).
4. Exercise – not only does regular exercise promote sleep quality but maintaining fitness always prevents injury.
5. Ditch the caffeine and big dinners – neither are conducive to sleep quality.
Have questions or need help? Get in touch.