It boasts having been part of the main and most important studies in the field of rest, in addition to being “the dream coach” for the most famous athletes. Players of Real Madrid, Chelsea, Manchester United, Cristiano Ronaldo himself or Beckham himself seem to be on his advisory list.
His name is Nick Littlehales, he is the author of the book “Sleeping” and creator of the “R90” method to sleep and revitalize body and mind. The “sleep coach” of elite athletes reveals the keys to achieving a true restful sleep.
Sleeping the necessary hours and accompanying a deep and restful sleep is vital, not only to feel good, but also to prevent diseases that a priori we do not relate or believe are related to rest, as well as to reduce the risk of sports injuries .
According to the protagonist of the dream, Nick Littlehales, our sleep time has been diminished around one or two hours since the time of the 50s, a phenomenon that has to be taken into account since during the hours of sleep our brain takes advantage of eliminate unnecessary toxins , neurological problems may appear if we do not sleep enough to throw them away.
But how much and how is it enough ?: “R90” method
Through his sleep method “R90” , the so-called “sleep coach”, highlights some keys to take into account to achieve a complete rest. According to his experience, these guidelines have been the basis of the restful sleep of many football players and different cycling teams of the Tour de France, as is the case of Team Sky, for whom he even designed a portable sleep kit.
- Sleep following cycles of 90 min : not everyone has the need to sleep eight hours , nor the same capacity for physical and mental recovery. The appropriate thing is to calculate the personal sleep time that each one needs but in cycles or phases of 90min, until finding the exact amount of phases that we need.
Littlehales ensures that the optimal number of cycles for the athlete is usually five, and that it is always important to set an hour to get up, regardless of the day (work or holiday), and taking into account that it is about 90min before going to work.
- Before and after sleep : pre and post-sleep is also important in the “R90” method of Nick Littlehales. Doing activities that involve too much stress or concentration in the 90min prior to going to bed or after getting up can affect our quality of sleep.
- Siesta yes, but brief : a period of ideal recovery that does not exceed 30 minutes of sleep. It even reveals that many training facilities of prestigious sports clubs are already being equipped with areas specially designed for these strategic naps.
- Sleep environment : the space in which we sleep influences notoriously the quality of sleep . According to the coach, it is important to do it in a room without technology, completely dark and silent, and with an ambient temperature within a range of 16-18ºC.
In addition to these tips, the dream teacher does not forget other more technical aspects to consider as the knowledge of our circadian rhythm and the personal chronotype of mornings or afternoons , which according to the dream specialist says it is a genetic factor of utmost importance in high level athletes.
The mattress and the position also matter : that it is big enough and we will always try it in a fetal position. The correct posture to sleep : on the side, if you are right-handed on your left side and if you are left-handed on the right side.
How do you stay?