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Sleeping Positions

Sleeping on your stomach isn't the best for your spine

Are you a human pretzel, a roto-tiller, a slab, a cuddler, a pillow fighter? The position you sleep in can make a big difference in the quality of your sleep. Everyone is different, but numerous sleeping positions can help you find comfort and relief.

We’ve spoken to quite a few health care practitioners over the years about their own sleep and what they recommend to their patients. We have found varying opinions about the best position to sleep in.

Everyone will agree that the best sleeping position meets the following requirements:

  1. Your body is aligned head to foot, side to side, and back to front. Imagine a plumb line hanging from the crown of your head through the core of your body. When the line is straight, your spine is aligned head to foot. Now, think of keeping your spine similarly aligned while you’re lying down. Side-to-side alignment means your body isn’t twisted (with one shoulder or hip canted forward or back). Back-to-front alignment means your spine is neither hunched forward nor arching back.
  2. You feel comfortable, meaning that you’re feeling no pressure points, most commonly at the hips, shoulders, or lower back.
  3. Your body is well supported.

The challenge for a mattress manufacturer is that # 2 and # 3 conflict. A surface that is so firm that it can be classified as very supportive, such as the floor, will create pressure points. Your joints and muscles need some mercy and surface cushioning. Yet a mattress that is only soft and comfortable as a cloud will offer no support. The art is to choose the right combination of deep support and surface cushioning that works best for your own body.

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