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Roundnet Athletes and Sleep - Are They Getting Enough?



Roundnet Athletes and Sleep -
Are They Getting Enough?

Written By: Tom Witt - MA Kinesiology, CSU Chico

**Inside This Article**

*FIRST EVER Data Collected on Roundnet Athlete Average Sleep*

*Strategies to Improve YOUR Sleep and Recovery!*

*Data on Importance of Sleep for Athletes and Other Pro Sports*

Sleep, Recovery and Injury Cause/Prevention

There is no current data on the average amount of sleep a roundnet athlete averages.

Collecting this data may be important for many things including but not limited to - improving recovery, training techniques and overall health of roundnet athletes, compare to other sports, to just produce more roundnet related data for the public to see and converse about!

Attaining proper amounts of sleep is crucial in the time period leading up to and after a roundnet tournament.

Importance of Sleep for Athletes

In regards to the importance of sleep, the Gatorade Sports Science Institute states, 

Sleep is one of the body’s most important biological functions with roles in performance, cognition, learning, development and mental and physical health.

While there are numerous consequences as a result of inadequate sleep, identifying sleep problems and following the recommended sleep guidelines can help ensure sporting performance is maximized.” 

"While limited, this data suggests that increasing the amount of sleep an athlete receives may significantly enhance performance.” 

(“Sleep and athletes”, 2017, Halson, Shona, Gatorade Sports Science Institute, https://www.gssiweb.org/sports-science-exchange/article/sse-167-sleep-and-athletes)

Sleeping well in general, but especially leading up to and after a roundnet tournament, is crucial to short term, and long term success and overall health.  

How Much Sleep Do Athletes Need?

The National Sleep Foundation also set broad recommendations for hours of sleep:  

  • School age children (6-13 years) is 9-11 hours

  • Teens (14-17 years) is 8-10 hours

  • Young adults (18-25 years) is 7-11 hours

  • Age 26-64 is 7-9 hours

  • Age 64 + is 7-9 hours

*It is noted that each recommended range has an upper and lower range that, “may be appropriate” which stretches the school age range from 7-12 hours, the teen from 7-11 and the young adult from 6-11 hours.

How Much Sleep Are Roundnet Athletes Averaging?

There were 147 total votes on the poll, "Roundnet Athletes - How Many Hours Of Sleep, On Average, Do You Get Per Night?"

Of the 147 total votes over half, 101, get less than 8 hours of sleep on average per night.

46 of the voters average over 8 hours of sleep per night. 

Though, this data is not based on a specific sleep monitoring tool - such as a fitness watch, sleep journal, etc. - this self-reported data gives an initial look into the sleep patterns of roundnet athletes. 

My suggestions for future ideas for studies regarding roundnet athlete sleep/recovery are covered later in the article!

 

 

How does this first look into the sleep patterns of roundnet athletes compare to those in other sports?

Read more below to find out!

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General Sleep Recommendations

  • Get to know your body, be aware of what it needs, and when.
  • Keep a sleep journal. Whether that is a fitness tracking device or good ole pen and paper.
  • Try to 'unplug' before bedtime.
      • "Additionally, athletes are affected by extensive exposure to electric light and evening use of electronic media devices." (The Variability of Sleep Among Elite Athletes)
    • At least try to not stare at your phone/screen for at least 30 minutes before bedtime.
    • Listen to some music, podcast, audio book instead of Instagram or Netflix.
  • Create a high quality 'sleep environment'.
    • Cooler temperatures, clean space, the ability to block out light and noise, etc. 

Understand the importance of getting adequate sleep during training, and allow for the possibility for worse sleep around competition.

In general, one may need more sleep the days after a Spikeball tournament or hard workout, as opposed to after visiting your relatives, lounging around, for the winter holidays. 

 

How Much Sleep Are Athletes In Other Sports Averaging?

In a 2015 study in Australia of athletes competing at the national and international level, athletes wore sleep watches for a minimum of seven nights during a training phase. On average, elite athletes spent 8.4 hours in bed with 6.8 hours asleep

A 2014 study conducted in Australia with elite youth soccer players (average age of 18.5 years) showed that athletes slept an average of 7.5 hours with an 89 percent sleep efficiency over the 18 nights monitored. The study examined the impact of early evening high intensity training on sleep and found no effect on sleep (Robey et al., 2014).

Lastella and colleagues (2014) set out to determine the sleep habits of elite athletes. A total of 124 athletes (104 male, 20 female) participated in this investigation. The athletes were split into two groups: a team sport athlete group and in individual athlete group.

Individual sport athletes slept less than team sport athletes, 6.5 hours vs. 7 hours, respectively.

The sleep/wake behavior for each of the athletes was assessed for a minimum of 7 nights with a self-report sleep diary and wrist activity monitors during a typical training phase. ("Sleep habits of elite athletes", Jul 19, 2014, NASE, https://www.naseinc.com/blog/sleep-habits-of-elite-athletes/)

Though these may be the averages, these are not necessarily the 'ideal' amounts. 

Sleep Problems Leading Up To Competition

A 2011 study examined the question of how different is sleep prior to important competitions (Erlacher et al., 2011).

  • Sixty two percent of athletes (in this case they were more than 600 German athletes, with an average of 11.5 years of experience training 11 hours per week) reported poor sleep prior to an important competition in the previous year.
  • Eighty percent stated they had difficulty falling asleep due to a variety of factors, including thinking about the competition (77 percent), pre-competition nerves (60 percent) and a lack of familiarity with travel surroundings (29 percent)
  • Twenty-seven percent did report an increase in daytime sleepiness, 18 percent reported a bad mood, and only 13 percent reported poor performance in a competition due to poor sleep.

Athletes should understand the importance of getting adequate sleep during training, and allow for the possibility for worse sleep around competition.

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Hours Asleep vs. Hours in Bed

Published data from Stanford student-athletes shows that athletes reported they were getting about an hour more sleep than a sleep measurement device clocked them in at (7.8 hours in self report vs. 6.6 hours according to a sleep watch) during a baseline measurement period, while during an extended sleep period, the student-athletes reported nearly two hours more than the sleep watch (10.4 vs 8.5 hours) (Mah et al., 2011).

This data supports the view that time in bed and subjectively reported sleep time typically exceed actual sleep duration.

Other literature states that adolescents and young adults very specifically need 9.25 hours of sleep per night. Either way, these recommendations are for hours of sleep, not simply hours in bed.(https://cdn2.sportngin.com/attachments/document/0102/9775/sleep_May_2016.pdf

Be aware of your sleep tracking and be aware of how you feel!

Youth Athletes and Sleep

“A 2014 study in the Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine found that adolescents who played a game following a night of fewer than 8 hours of sleep were nearly twice as likely to get injured as those who got 8 hours of sleep.” (“Chronic lack of sleep is associated with increased sports injuries in adolescent athletes”, 2014)

How Much Sleep Are Youth Athletes ACTUALLY Getting?

In regard to how much sleep adolescent athletes are actually getting the authors went on to say,  

Despite the recommendation that 12–18 year olds obtain a minimum of 9 hrs of sleep per night, research shows that adolescents sleep between 7.5 and 8.5 hrs per night

While there is certainly going to be individual differences, it is clear that many adolescents are not meeting the minimum requirements for the recommended hours of sleep.” (“Sleep and athletes”, 2017, Halson, Shona, Gatorade Sports Science Institute, https://www.gssiweb.org/sports-science-exchange/article/sse-167-sleep-and-athletes)

A 2006 National Sleep Foundation poll found that 45 percent of teens get less than eight hours, 31 percent get between eight and nine, and 20 percent get nine or more hours.

Regardless if you are a child, adolescent, or adult - SLEEP and recovery are an important aspect of injury prevention, as well as performing your best.

More POSITIVE Sleep and Athlete Data

Sleep and Women’s Tennis Players- 

“Tennis: When women’s tennis players increased their nightly sleep to 10 hours, they also experienced improved sprint times by 1.5 seconds as well as their serve accuracy by 23.8 percent.” (Study shows sleep extension improves athletic performance and mood”, 2009, AMERICAN ACADEMY OF SLEEP MEDICINE)

Sleep and Major League Baseball Players-

In 2013, a study published in the American Academy of Sleep Medicine followed 80 Major League Baseball players over a period of three seasons. Their sleeping habits were recorded before the start of the 2010 season and ranked according to the Epworth sleepiness scale. 

Players who scored high for sleepiness were less than 40 percent likely to still be playing three seasons later, as compared with 72 percent of players who scored low on sleepiness. (“Studies link fatigue and sleep to MLB performance and career longevity”, 2013https://aasm.org/studies-link-fatigue-and-sleep-to-mlb-performance-and-career-longevity/)

Sleep and Basketball Players-

  • Another means of examining the effect of sleep on performance is to extend the amount of sleep an athlete receives and determine the effects on subsequent performance. 
  • Mah et al, instructed six basketball players to obtain as much extra sleep as possible following two weeks of normal sleep habits.
  • Faster sprint times and increased free-throw accuracy was observed at the end of the sleep extension period. 
  • Mood was also significantly improved, with increased vigour and decreased fatigue.

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Sleep Extension To Improve Performance

Sleep extension can be a performance enhancement strategy via reducing sleep debt and allowing athletes to more fully recovery, maximize learning gains and experience skill improvements.

("Elite Athletes and Sleep: How Much are they Getting? What Happens when they Don’t Get Enough? Why Short Term Sleep Extension might be a Performance Enhancement Strategy")

"While limited, this data suggests that increasing the amount of sleep an athlete receives may significantly enhance performance.” 

(“Sleep and athletes”, 2017, Halson, Shona, Gatorade Sports Science Institute, https://www.gssiweb.org/sports-science-exchange/article/sse-167-sleep-and-athletes)

Regularly getting enough sleep can have a positive effect in the short term and in the long term! 


Future Studies on Sleep and Roundnet

My suggestions for future studies regarding sleep/recovery of roundnet athletes:

  • Specific group testing and comparison
    • Pro players, college players, different age groups, players from all 'skill' levels, women and men, different countries, different Spikeball Roundnet Association regions, etc. 

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Listen to your body, and treat it well.

YOU deserve it! (Annnnd … so does your roundnet teammate)

Spike on!

- Tom Witt  

Check the links for more roundnet articles!

'Roundnet World Blog - Roundnet Player/Community Profiles'

'Roundnet World - Be A Better Baller Blog'

Witt Roundnet Round-Up’ 

VIDEO: How To Roundnet - 3vs3 Roundnet With Sides

References:

1. Elite Athletes and Sleep: How Much are they Getting? What Happens when they Don’t Get Enough? Why Short Term Sleep Extension might be a Performance Enhancement Strategy", Lindsay Thornton, Senior Sport Psychophysiologist, United States Olympic Committee, https://cdn2.sportngin.com/attachments/document/0102/9775/sleep_May_2016.pdf

2. Sleep and athletes”, 2017, Halson, Shona, Gatorade Sports Science Institute, https://www.gssiweb.org/sports-science-exchange/article/sse-167-sleep-and-athletes

3. Sleep habits of elite athletes", Jul 19, 2014, NASE, https://www.naseinc.com/blog/sleep-habits-of-elite-athletes/

4. Study shows sleep extension improves athletic performance and mood”, 2009, AMERICAN ACADEMY OF SLEEP MEDICINE

5. Studies link fatigue and sleep to MLB performance and career longevity”, 2013https://aasm.org/studies-link-fatigue-and-sleep-to-mlb-performance-and-career-longevity/

6. The Variability of Sleep Among Elite Athletes, Mathieu Nedelec, Anis Aloulou, François Duforez, Tim Meyer, and Gregory Duponthttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6063976/

7. 8 Ways to Sleep Like a Pro Athlete, Ryan Skidmore, https://simplifaster.com/articles/athlete-sleep-habits/

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