Posted on Dec 19, 2011, 6 a.m.
People sleep significantly better and feel more alert during the day if they get at least 150 minutes of exercise a week.
Among adults in the United States, an estimated 35 to 40% of the population has problems with falling asleep or with daytime sleepiness. Paul Loprinzi, from Bellarmine University (Kentucky, USA), and colleagues studied a nationally representative sample of more than 2,600 men and women, ages 18-85 years, adding evidence to mounting research showing the importance of exercise to a number of health factors. Specifically, the team found that 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity a week, which is the national guideline, provided a 65% improvement in sleep quality. People also said they felt less sleepy during the day, compared to those with less physical activity. Concluding that: “Objectively-measured physical activity was associated with several self-reported sleeping-related parameters,” the study authors note that: “Those who were more active fell asleep quicker.”
Paul D. Loprinzi, Bradley J. Cardinal. “Association between objectively-measured physical activity and sleep, NHANES 2005–2006.” Mental Health and Physical Activity, Volume 4, Issue 2, December 2011, Pages 65-69