The best ever excuse to have a power nap
I don’t know about you guys, but I’m a big believer in the ‘power nap’ – and as it turns out, it’s even more powerful than I thought!
New research has found a 45-minute snooze doesn’t just leave you well-rested; it can also boost your memory by up to five times.
As part of a German study, participants had to learn 90 single words as well as 120 unconnected word pairs such as ‘milk taxi’.
Some then watched a DVD while others indulged in a sneaky nap. According to the subsequent article in the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory journal, those who had slept remembered more word pairs than those who hadn’t.
Yep, the old adage, “you snooze, you lose”, couldn’t be further from the truth!
Technically, the nappers’ memory performance didn’t improve compared to the levels measured immediately after the learning phase, they did remain constant – while the memories of people in the other group faded.
According to the Saarland University scientists, bursts of brain activity known as ‘sleep spindles’ play an important role during sleep in consolidating new information.
A nap of just 45 minutes to an hour can produce “a five-fold improvement in information retrieval from memory”.
The conclusion? “A concentrated period of learning followed by a short relaxing sleep is all that's needed” to enhance recall.
Now excuse me while I indulge in a quick snooze at my desk (hey, it’s for my memory)!
Are you a fan of the power nap?
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