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New York - Exercise, Less Sitting Time, Linked To Better Sleep

Published on: March 6, 2013 11:24 PM
By: Reuters
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Ultra-Orthodox Jewish men take part in a yoga class at a studio in Ramat Beit Shemesh, about 12 miles from Jerusalem. Almost a dozen devout Jewish men meet weekly at the studio, the only one of its kind in the area. (Ronen Zvulun/Reuters)Ultra-Orthodox Jewish men take part in a yoga class at a studio in Ramat Beit Shemesh, about 12 miles from Jerusalem. Almost a dozen devout Jewish men meet weekly at the studio, the only one of its kind in the area. (Ronen Zvulun/Reuters)

New York - Insomniacs looking for a good night’s sleep may want to hit the treadmill, take a walk or play a game of golf or tennis because a new report released on Monday shows exercise promotes good sleep and the more vigorous the workout the better.

Just 10 minutes of exercise a day could make a difference in the duration and quality of sleep, the survey by the non-profit National Sleep Foundation showed.

“We found that exercise and great sleep go together, hand in hand,” Max Hirshkowitz, a sleep researcher and the chair of the poll task force, said in an interview.

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“We also found a step-wise increase in how vigorous the quality is, in terms of how much you exercise. So if you say you exercise a lot, we found better sleep quality. For people who don’t exercise at all we found more sleep problems.”

Earlier research studies have shown the impact of exercise on sleep, but Hirshkowitz, who is a professor at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, said the survey is the first to detail the benefits of exercise in a nationally representative poll of this size.

People who described themselves as exercisers reported better sleep than their more sedentary counterparts, although the amount of sleep, an average of just under seven hours on weeknight, was the same.

More than 75 percent of the 1,000 people questioned in the Internet and telephone poll who described themselves as exercisers said they slept well, compared to just over half of people who did no exercise.

Very active people reported fewer sleep problems, dozed off quicker and needed less shut eye a night to function at their best during the day.

Sitting, more than eight hours daily also had a negative impact on sleep, according to the poll.

NAPS, STRUGGLING TO STAY AWAKE

Nearly half of Americans report experiencing insomnia occasionally, and 22 percent suffer from the condition, which can be caused by stress, anxiety, pain and medication, every or almost every night, according to the foundation.

In addition to poorer sleep, non-exercisers also were less likely to report good or excellent health compared to active people and had more trouble staying awake while driving and eating.

Nearly three times as many sedentary people said they have trouble keeping awake during the day than exercisers. They also took more naps and had more symptoms of sleep apnea, a disorder that causes shallow breaths or pauses in breathing during sleep, than exercisers,

More than 44 percent of non-exercisers were at a moderate risk for sleep apnea, a higher percentage than active people questioned in the poll.

The survey also seemed to debunk the idea that exercising early or late in the day would adversely impact sleep because it showed that being active at any time of the day was better than being sedentary.

“Exercise is beneficial to sleep,” Dr. Barbara Phillips, a member of the poll task force, said in a statement. “It’s time to revise global recommendations for improving sleep and put exercise - any time - at the top of our list for healthy sleep habits.”


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Read Comments (8)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Mar 06, 2013 at 11:30 PM GevalDigeh Says:

What a bunch of morons in the picture. Bunch of leidigeiers. Instead of hitting the treadmill they waste some quality time. What a bunch of bluffers. I bet u these men are not really religious. All fake

2

 Mar 07, 2013 at 12:15 AM lazerx Says:

if they need yoga, their Judaism is lacking.

3

 Mar 07, 2013 at 01:45 AM c Says:

Maybe they can sleep. After seeing that disturbing picture, I can't.

4

 Mar 07, 2013 at 07:31 AM monalisa Says:

It ain't working for me! I think insomnia is aggravated by stress AKA things on your mind. All the exercise in the world can't stop you thinking about everything especially the things that worry you. Still, it's a nice fluff piece.

5

 Mar 07, 2013 at 08:00 AM couch potato Says:

I thought yoga was avodah zora. So why are these idiots hanging upside down? It looks like torture to me.

6

 Mar 07, 2013 at 08:36 AM Benny Says:

#1, 2, and 5
All of you, probably around 300 pounds-Talking down to people who exercise
If we don't understand what they do - just say so
And to #1 the treadmill is a waste of time too, besides you might become handicapped, like I saw some people in our gym
Do regular sports: play basketball, succer, volleyball

7

 Mar 07, 2013 at 09:52 PM esther Says:

Reply to #4  
monalisa Says:

It ain't working for me! I think insomnia is aggravated by stress AKA things on your mind. All the exercise in the world can't stop you thinking about everything especially the things that worry you. Still, it's a nice fluff piece.

the exercise,walking for me,really helps to relieve stress so that by the time you're ready for bed,you're tired AND more relaxed.

8

 Mar 07, 2013 at 11:47 PM proudjewboy Says:

Looks like a torture chamber to me.

9

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