June 2016

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How To Stay Cool In Bed This Summer

By | Health & Wellbeing, Sleep Blog | No Comments

Leg in or leg out? Duvet on or duvet off? When it comes to sleeping during hot, sweaty summer nights, the choices and (torments) are endless. Your bed should be a cool, pleasurable haven to retreat to after a day of fun on the beach (or sweating it out in the office). So if your sleep is being interrupted by too much heat too often over summer, here’s how you can cool down and get comfortable after dark…

Change your duvet

The lower the tog count, the cooler your duvet. Goose feather and down duvets allow excess humidity to naturally escape – ensuring a superbly comfortable night’s sleep. Spundown duvets are filled with microfiber (very fine fibres of less than 1 micron diameter), which allow moisture to be transmitted through the material away from your skin. Machine-washable, they’re the best solution if you want to keep your bedding fresh and hygienically clean during bouts of punishing summer heat.

Go bigger

Snuggling up to your partner, children or a pet may be part of your normal bedtime routine, but close body contact can magnify feelings of stuffiness. Give each other space by trading up your current mattress size from Double to King, or from King to Super-King. Adding a divan or ottoman base to your order will give you plenty of much-needed storage for winter duvets and bulky bedding.

Up your spring count

The more springs your mattress has, the more support it will offer you. Because the springs work independently, you stay put even if your partner moves. The upper layer moulds to your unique body print, while the lower layer compensates for even the tiniest change in weight distribution. Even on the hottest of nights, tossing and turning is eliminated – freeing you up to drift into a beautifully restorative sleep.  The Slumberland Amore mattress offers a 3300 total spring count and is the first mattress to be awarded a Mumsnet Best 2016!

Seasonal rotation

Flipping your mattress over encourages an even settling of the high-quality fibres while giving you a fresh sleep surface to luxuriate on. Look out for designs with a wool-side for winter and a cotton-side for summer to balance temperature swings that can cause restless nights.

Maximum Airflow

Unlike traditional spring mattresses, the Slumberland Harmony Collection offers an unrivalled level of breathability and temperature control. That’s because the revolutionary construction of Affinity™ Foam has an innovative open cell structure that allows more air to pass through it. The end result is a mattress which enables you to enjoy a healthy clean and well ventilated sleep environment.

Fight off allergies

Summer can be brutal if you have allergies. Choose a mattress which offers you extra protection against dust mites that are known to trigger asthma attacks. The Affinitex top layer in the Slumberland Harmony Collection incorporates Actipro® which neutralises bad bacteria and allergens for the lifetime of the mattress.

Keep hydrated

Most healthy adults ought to drink a minimum of three litres of water a day. If you work outdoors during the summer, this rises to five litres. Drinking water before bedtime is not only refreshing, it’s especially good for replenishing lost fluids. It balances your hormone and energy levels, along with your joints and muscles – relaxing the body so it’s rejuvenated by the morning. (If you have kidney or heart problems, or a frequent urge to go to the toilet during the night, drinking water before bedtime is not recommended, as it puts extra pressure on the kidneys.)

Snack right

A handful of poppy seeds (not suitable for children, or for consumption in large quantities) or a spoon of raw Fenugreek seeds will regulate your body temperature. Adding a tablespoon of honey to cold milk or drinking a glass of coconut nut also has fast, effective results.

Keep the window open

The best temperature for sleep is around 68°F (20°C). Opening your window (even slightly) will allow fresh air to circulate around the room – naturally regulating your body temperature. If it’s too noisy, invest in an air purifier which cleans the air to provide a safer and more hygienic sleeping space.

Guest Blog Contribution: http://www.landofbeds.co.uk/slumberland

Image copyright: Shutterstock.

Slumberland Mattresses

5 Yoga Poses For a Good Night’s Sleep

By | Fitness, Health & Wellbeing, Sleep Blog, Uncategorised | No Comments

If lack of sleep is an issue for you, yoga could help give you the good night’s sleep your body craves.

A study by the Mental Health Foundation found that over 30% of the UK’s population suffers from insomnia or other sleep difficulties. And worryingly it’s not just the matter of exhaustion that comes to play with insomnia; there are major health problems such as depression, obesity, immune deficiency and heart disease.

Yoga helps to relax the nervous system, which is the part of your body responsible for a restful sleep. The gentle physical exercise and breathing techniques promoted in yoga can encourage regular and restful sleep patterns without resorting to medication.

Additionally, yoga’s meditative aspect comes into play to quiet the mind. So if a racing mind is what keeps you from getting a good night’s sleep then performing yoga at any point during the day may offer you some relief.

There are specific poses you can do that are known to help people sleep more soundly. We’ve put together five easy poses for you to try at home to make it easier for you to drift off:

1. Mountain pose:

Mountain

Counter a long day of contracting the back with this powerful back and chest-opening posture. Come to a comfortable standing position with feet hips-width apart, bring your hands up over your head with palms facing forward and thumbs hooked as you bend gently backwards and breathe deeply. Hold the mountain pose for up to one minute.

2. Chair pose:

Chair pose

Begin in mountain pose, inhale and raise your arms above your head, perpendicular to the floor. Exhale as you bend your knees, bringing your thighs as parallel to the floor as they can get – your knees will project out slightly over your feet. Shift your weight onto your heels and hold for up to a minute.

3. Tree pose:

tree

Begin standing with your arms at your sides and shift your weight to your left foot. Fix your gaze gently on one, unmoving point in front of you and draw your right foot up and place the sole against the inner left thigh. Bring your hands together at the heart chakra and hold for one minute, then repeat for the same amount of time on the opposite side.

4. Cat pose:

cat

Start on your hands and knees in a neutral spine ‘tabletop’ position looking straight ahead. Make sure your knees are set directly below your hips and your wrists are under your shoulders. As you exhale, drop your chin to your chest and arch your back as much as you can, making sure to keep your shoulders and knees in position. Hold this pose for a couple of seconds before inhaling, raising your chin and coming back to neutral ‘tabletop’ position on your hands and knees. Repeat this pose for five rounds.

5. Camel pose:

camel

Kneel on your yoga mat with toes tucked and knees hip width apart. As you inhale, arch your back and slide your right hand down to your right heel. If you are a beginner reach the left hand up back towards the wall, or if you are confident, reach the left hand down to your left heel. Do not strain or flex your neck but keep it in a neutral position. Stay in this posture for a couple of breaths.

We’d love to hear how you get on with these yoga poses so do let us know via our Facebook page here.  Namaste.

Sleeping bride

Get to bed if you’re getting wed! How to sleep better before your wedding day

By | Beauty, Health & Wellbeing, Sleep Blog | No Comments

With engagement announcements blowing like confetti through our Facebook feeds, and wedding bells ringing throughout the land, there can be no doubting that wedding season is now in full swing! Whether you’re newly-engaged or on the home straight heading towards the aisle, every bride and groom can benefit from getting comfortable and enjoying a good night’s sleep in the run up to the Big Day. Here’s our Sleep Experts’ top tips on how to do just that…

One year Before Your Wedding – Save yourself the trouble of endless nights of tossing and turning by making all the key decisions early on. Speak to your partner and family about a budget that’s affordable for you – seeking appropriate financial advice if you decide to loan any additional funds. Following that, it’s a case of ‘people first, then the venue’ advises Elizabeth Clayton. Decide how many guests you would like to invite and then choose a venue that can comfortably accommodate them. This will also set the overall tone of your wedding day – laid back, quirky, cool or traditional – influencing choices from your dress and transport, to flowers and table arrangements.

Nine Months Before Your Wedding – Answer these questions to choose your honeymoon destination: How much can you afford to spend? How much time can you take off work? When should you go? What kind of honeymoon do you want to have? Once you have made your choice and are ready to book, look at what extras your hosts offer to make your bedroom a honeymooner’s paradise. Think four-poster beds, scattered rose petals and champagne on ice…

Six Months Before Your Wedding – Learn to manage your mounting wedding-related stress levels healthily by committing to move more, more often and building regular physical activity into your daily routine. A gentle yoga routine before bedtime is great way to end the day – calming the nerves and preparing your body and mind for a good night’s sleep.

Three Months Before Your Wedding – Send out your wedding invitations, enclosing your gift registry. The gift of a good night’s sleep is one any newlywed can enjoy – especially after a year of hectic preparations. Modern etiquette dictates that it’s now acceptable to request money if people wish to give you a gift, which you can save up to invest in a new marital bed.

Go with your fiancé to choose your new mattress and base – trying them out to find just the right level of tension for you. Place your order in advance, leaving an appropriate lead time to ensure you’re at home and ready to take delivery of it. (Alternatively, why not surprise your new husband or wife with a new bed to return to from honeymoon?) For guests on a budget, other options to add to your gift registry include bedding, such as gorgeously comfortably pillows and duvets.

Two Months Before Your Wedding – Have your hen or stag party one to two months before your Big Day, leaving plenty of time for the after-effects of any wild party nights to leave your body, so you can look and feel at your healthiest best.

One Month Before Your Wedding – With your wedding just four weeks away, don’t get sucked into the trap of spending late nights on your mobile phone making last-minute arrangements. The glow from your screen will impact on your body clock, making it harder for you to achieve the deep levels of restorative sleep you need. Instead, set time aside first-thing in the morning to work through your notifications and emails to face the day with a clear head.

One Week Before Your Wedding – Pack a bag for your wedding night and ask someone to deliver it to the hotel where you will be staying. Set time aside to confirm all the details of your special day with the companies you’re trusting to make everything happen for you! Doing so will keep your night-time stress levels from peaking.

The Night Before Your Wedding – Drink as little alcohol as possible. As soon as the alcohol starts to wear off, you will come out of your initial deep sleep into Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep which is much easier to wake up from. In a typical night you will have six or seven cycles of REM sleep versus only one or two if you’ve been drinking, leaving you feeling exhausted – reports Drink Aware.

Image Copyright of Shutterstock

Guest Contributor’s Credit: www.landofbeds.co.uk/slumberland

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Warm Weather Training – Preparing for the Rio Heat

By | Fitness, Health & Wellbeing, Sleep Blog | One Comment

The 2016 Olympic Games in Rio will obviously have very different conditions to where our healthy sleep supporter Katarina Johnson-Thompson trains in Liverpool, so it is important she gets her body used to the conditions she will be competing in. Not only this – warm weather training offers unique training and recovery opportunities:

“I went to Tenerife, Spain for 10 days for my warm weather training. It was a mixture of a training camp where I worked on the technical aspects of my regime, but also a recovery session from the heavy training block I did throughout the winter in Liverpool.

For most athletes, warm weather training is a part of their yearly schedule, as the weather conditions can make a huge impact on training and recovery, especially when compared with the weather conditions Britain has to offer.

“It’s become an annual trip, as it’s really beneficial to train with minimal distractions. The warm weather also aids muscle recovery and is relaxing and more enjoyable to train in. When I’m away I can really focus on my technical training and recovery.”

While it may be the best thing for her training schedule, it can be difficult being away from home comforts.

“When I’m in Tenerife I don’t enjoy being away from my own bed. Your own bed is always the best and in this particular case, that is definitely the truth. After I finish a hard training session in the winter I look forward to passing out in my own bed – but the same can’t be said for Tenerife!

Sleep is an important part of recovery for any athlete, so it’s important to feel relaxed and able to sleep to make sure the next day’s training can be maximised.

 

Image credit: Mark Shearman Athletics Images

Slumberland climb Snowdon for Macmillan Woodlands Cancer Centre

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On Saturday 4th June, the Slumberland team took on Mount Snowdon to raise money for the Macmillan Woodlands Cancer Centre at Hinchingbrooke, Huntingdon.

At 3,560 feet high, Snowdon is one of the highest mountains in the British Isles and the team successfully climbed to the top with a mini Slumberland bed.

John Cornhill, Healthy and Safety Advisor at Steinhoff UK Beds said “It was a tough day, a great sense of achievement, lots of fun and satisfying knowing we have raised lots of money for a good cause.”

Snowdon photo 1
Photo L to R: Val Abram, Tony Abram, Sue Cornhill, Me, Natalie Richardson, Clive Richardson, Judith Cox, Steve Cox.

The Slumberland team have a history of charitable efforts. It was their fourth year raising money for the Macmillan Woodlands Cancer Centre, after one of the team member’s wife received treatment there a few years ago.

Previous years of fundraising included Last of the Summer Wine Walk dressed up as Nora Batty and Compo characters, Sherwood Forest Walk dressed up as Robin Hoods and maid Marion’s and Walking the Viking Way dressed up as Vikings and carrying a longboat.

The Slumberland team are delighted to have raised over £1200 for the Macmillan Woodlands Cancer Centre this year. John Cornhill said “We are already thinking about what to do next year to raise money, but I am sure it will most likely involve a bed.”

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Photo: Clive Richardson reaching the top of Snowdon with his Slumberland bed and PJs.

A big congratulations to all those involved!

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Katarina Johnson-Thompson Qualifies for Rio

By | Fitness, Health & Wellbeing, Sleep Blog | No Comments

While most Brits were enjoying a long bank holiday weekend last week, our Healthy Sleep Ambassador, Katarina Johnson-Thompson, was taking part in an annual athletics competition – the Hypo-Meeting in Gotzis, Austria.

It is known within athletics as the unofficial World Championships for multi-eventers, as usually all the best multi-event athletes throughout the world compete in this meet. Kat is no exception and on her first time competing in Gotzis in 2014, she won the whole event, beating a very competitive field including World Indoor & Commonwealth Champion, Brianne Thieson-Eaton.

This year she was not as lucky, slipping to sixth place on the second day after scoring three personal bests on the Saturday. However, Kat got what she came for, qualifying for the Rio Olympics with a score of 6,304.

“My goal is definitely a gold medal still in Rio. I’ve got a lot to work on between now and then but this is my first time back after knee surgery, so I know exactly what I need to work on. I know that I have a big jump in me. The shot put is definitely a bigger concern for me.”

Kat will continue to train right the way up to Rio. She will now undertake much more technical training – so working on various stages of throwing the javelin & shot put, hurdling, high & long jump.

Slumberland wishes her the best of luck, and a good night’s sleep in her own bed now she’s back!

 

Image Credit: Mark Shearman Athletics Images