The Benefits of Napping

The Benefits of Napping

If you’re anything like me, napping is your guilty pleasure. Especially as a college student it’s quite common to have a wacky sleep schedule due to papers and assignments, and probably mostly because of procrastination. Whether it’s between classes or before tackling my hours of homework, I have always found that I need a solid power nap before conquering my to-do list. I have always believed that my reliance on naps was a vice; however, after some research, I have found some very interesting benefits of napping:

ASAPScience released “The Scientific Power of Naps” on their YouTube channel back in 2012. The video is only 2 minutes, but discusses why it is sometimes beneficial to stop fighting our urges to sleep, because in fact, power naps can often have a really positive effect on our brains and bodies. The video discusses the main stages of sleep: Stage 1, Stage 2, Stage 3, and Rapid Eye Movement (REM for short). The video then goes further, explaining that by sleeping 10-30 minutes, you’ll reach Stages 1 and 2. By napping for just 30 minutes could in turn help you become more productive, improve memory and creativeness, and the obvious, relieve your tiredness! If you decide to nap longer than 30 minutes, you may experience sleep inertia, essentially meaning you probably won’t feel relieved and awake, but instead long for more sleep.

Watch the video here:

The general consensus that I’ve found is there are few qualms with napping, despite my initial thoughts. WebMD supports napping as well, probably because it can help with stress and heart disease. Jennifer Soong, throws out a couple helpful tips when napping:

  • It may be beneficial to create a “nap schedule” rather than just randomly resting when you get tired. Write it down in your planner!
  • Similar to ASAPScience, keep it around 30 minutes! Sleep inertia is your enemy if you’re trying to be post-nap productive.
  • Ensure your area is a dark, calm setting. You don’t want to be tossing and turning because it’s bright! graciously enlightened me on some companies that have nap rooms in their offices. Some of these companies are Ben and Jerry’s, Zappos, Nike, Huffington Post NYC, Google, and even NASA. Hello, future employers! Sign me up!

Relaxation Room at Google

Relaxation Room at Google

Sleep pod at Google

Sleep pod at Google








7 thoughts on “The Benefits of Napping

  1. Patrick Winch

    Based on personal past experience, I can’t even begin to express how accurate this article is. My father was born in 1943, so he is 73 years old. He still works every day, plays music professionally, works out three times a week, and naps every time he gets the chance. Obviously not everyone ages the same way, but I strongly believe that my dad has been able to maintain his youthful stride thanks to his daily naps. The article attached explains the benefits of napping and how one can make the most of a nap in any place.

  2. David Ross

    I am writing this comment immediately following a solid 2.5 hour nap. I wish I had read this article before I had decided to go into a coma for part of my evening. Right now, I feel miserable. There clearly seems to be something magical around the 30 minute mark when it comes to napping but once I start I most definitely can’t stop. I found this article ( ) however that stated that a 90-120 minute nap can actually be helpful since it contains all stages of sleep. If that’s the case then why do I feel like I got hit by Joey Julius (Penn State’s kicker)?

  3. Marissa Dorros

    As a college student who often lacks efficient sleep at night, it is encouraging to know that napping is actually productive. As mentioned in this post, one of the benefits of napping is memory improvement. An experiment described here explains how napping increases memorization skills, although the researchers from Saarland University recommend taking a longer nap than the 30 minute naps mentioned in other studies. The participants in this study were asked to memorize word pairs, and those who took a nap after learning the words were able to recall the pairs better than those who did not nap afterwards.

  4. Alexandra Nicole Iaccino

    I always need to take a nap right after my last class of the day or I will never be able to get any of my work done. I also agree with the point that 30 minutes is a perfect amount of time to relieve sleepiness. I know that I can’t sleep more than a half hour or I won’t be able to function for the rest of the day. I found this article ( that also gives some good tips on when good times to nap are and how many minutes you should nap.

  5. Abigail Roe

    There is a fine line with napping. I agree with you that 30 minutes is a good length to nap. That way when you wake up you don’t feel groggy, but instead refreshed. I studied sleep in psychology last year and learned about the stages of sleep as well. In REM sleep your heartbeat and blood pressure increase as well. In my class, we learned that a person can go through the stages of sleep four times or more in a night. I wonder why some employers have nap rooms and others don’t. That is very cool and 21st century! Here is an article with more information about REM sleep

  6. Mairead Donnard

    I have always known that taking a nap is significantly healthier for your brain health than having a cup of coffee, but I did not realize that it is best to make a specific schedule for when one takes naps. I might try and do that. I also found it interesting that there are companies that encourage their employees to take a nap. I think that is such a great move on their part as if their employees are well rested they will have much more energy and accomplish greater work. Here is an article by the Mayo Clinic that along with the benefits of napping, discusses the cons that can be associated with napping:

  7. rvm5523

    Being a college student I feel that naps are vital as well. i try and fit them into my daily schedule and am glad to here that naps are supported by many accredited sources. Now I don’t feel as guilty was sitting down for a nap.

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