A few weeks ago, I delved into the research on post-exercise recoveryand concluded that the research backing virtually all recovery techniques is very thin—with the exception of sleep and diet. But I have a confession to make: even the research on sleep is pretty sparse. Sure, it seems self-evident that a good night’s sleep is a powerful restorative. There’s not a lot of research, though, that proves it, or that gives us much information about exactly how much we need, when, and (insert eye roll) in what sort of pajamas.
So it’s interesting to see that there’s a bunch of sleep research due to be presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine in Minneapolis next week. Conference presentations are inherently preliminary, so their conclusions have to be taken with a grain of salt—but they offer a sneak peek at the questions that researchers in a given field are currently tackling. Here’s a look at a few of the sleep studies that caught my eye: