How long does the ideal nap have to last, according to NASA calculations?

Siesta is much more than the national “sport”. It is a very healthy activity with great physical and mental benefits. Several scientific studies prove it. Thus, according to the National Sleep Foundation, a nap helps to rest the cells of the brain, muscles and organs, reducing stress and improving mood, alertness, creativity and more.

Another study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine states that people who take a nap reduce their heart problems by 37%, compared to 12% of those who do not take a nap.

However, the definitive confirmation comes from NASA itself. And it is that the space agency of the United States has verified that the nap is very useful for its astronauts.

NASA's recommendations

As explained by NASA, despite the recommendations they give their astronauts to sleep 8 hours a day, the truth is that life in a spaceship is so stressful that hopefully they get five or six hours of sleep. In this context, it has been shown that taking a nap can be useful to recharge batteries and avoid irritability, forgetfulness and fatigue caused by lack of sleep.

However, in a study on the effects of napping on astronauts, NASA realized that sleeping too much can be counterproductive. And it is that a long nap can leave you even more sleepy than before, especially if the body enters a deep sleep.

Experiment with air traffic controllers

How long should the ideal nap last, according to NASA calculations

To delimit the ideal duration of the nap, NASA conducted an experiment some time ago among air traffic controllers. And the conclusion was the following: the perfect nap has to last 26 minutes. Not one more and not one less.

According to the person in charge of supervising the effectiveness of the controllers during the experiment, Mark Rosekind, a 26-minute sleep would improve the work performance of these workers by 34% and would increase their alertness by 54&, compared to the pilots who did not take naps.

This experiment was carried out based on the conclusions made by NASA in 1995 for its astronauts. The results can be extrapolated to any job, especially those that require full attention. But not only that, because in the case of children and the elderly it is also essential.

Generally, a nap is done after eating, which also helps digestion as it produces muscle relaxation that makes it easier for the digestive system to do its job.

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