Will More Sleep Help the New York Jets Win?

By Lauren Gelman

Will More Sleep Help the New York Jets Win?
New York Jets coach Rex Ryan made headlines last week for bringing in sleep specialists to encourage players to catch more Zs, according to this Associated Press story in the Wall Street Journal. He also adjusted the team’s schedule to give them more time to sleep before practice.

Although last Sunday’s flawed game suggests the changes didn’t have immediate results, I applaud the initiative, which Ryan says the Jets will follow in future weeks.  Research shows it can take weeks to really catch up on a sleep debt, so maybe the effort will pay off in future games.

Science says it should, anyway: Sleep is linked to the body’s ability to repair itself, maintain a strong immune system, and recover from pain. One Stanford study of college football players from 2010 found that those who got more sleep over a nearly two-month period had a better athletic performance, including faster times on the 20-yard shuffle and 40-yard dash.

“Sleep duration may be an important consideration for an athlete’s daily training regimen,” the lead study author told ScienceDaily.

If you’re looking for more ways to boost your own sleep efforts, check out these tips:

19 All-Day Habits to a Better Night’s Rest »

Foods That Stop Insomnia »

How to Take the Perfect Nap »

Photo Credit: © BananaStock/Thinkstock

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