So looking at everything else minimalist, yet unable to comfortably sleep on just the floor, I decided to shift to the minimalist bed.
I'm now using a high quality dense futon. Not the cheap soft wallyworld special.
It is amazing.
Its like swallowing the red pill with my sleeping. I sleep much better now without the spring or foam induced curve in my back.
What kind of bed do you use? Or are you more man than me and sleeping on the floor?
So I read this yesterday evening and I thought ... hey, why not? I normally sleep on a mattress on the floor but have been looking into a cheap japanese futon (because I have this crazy idea of fitting everything I need in my car so I can just pack it all and go).
But yesterday I just put down a pillow and had a blanket and slept on the floor. It was a bit awkward and I think it needs getting use to. I'll try it again tonight and see how that goes. My back feels a lot better than usual ... because it forced me to sleep on my back and side rather than my stomach.
EDIT: So day 2 of sleeping on the floor wasn't so awesome. I like a firm sleeping spot (awkward phrasing ...) but concrete-like floor + carpet + lack of any other cushion whatsoever was not too conducive to REM cycling. Also, if I was trying to mirror the sleep habits of early humans, they probably slept on dirt (which had a bit more give than concrete), maybe had some grass, perhaps animal hides and such. So really, I'd think they had at least something comparable to what the OP described (a futon). Since I'm not going to put a pile of dirt, grass, and animal hides in my bedroom- I'll stick to the mattress for now until I can afford a futon or think up some alternative.
A while back, before I went Paleo. I herniated a lumbar disc, and sleeping on soft surfaces caused me a fair bit of pain. I finally wound up cutting a slit into the side of my mattress, and sliding a 2x6' sheet of plywood over the springs, but under the foam top. So I sleep on a bed that's pretty darn firm by most people's standards, and I can always take the board out if I want to.
I have been sleeping on a layer of sheets/blankets on the floor for a decade and it has worked well. I currently roll three sheets: One for under my knee, one under my lumbar region, one under the neck. I believe this preserves sound posture. Anyone care to disagree or comment as to what the best posture for sleeping is(ie. ergonomically best posture)?
I used to sleep on an air mattress but it got a hole in it so I tried sleeping on the floor (with just a sheet underneath). There's a half-inch of carpet so it's not like sleeping right on hardwood, but compared to a mattress it's very, very hard. And incredibly comfortable, which is pretty funny; after seeing all those mattress commercials with such and such technology, the best sleep of my life has been without a mattress of any kind. First, when I lie down I get this "ahhhh" sensation, like I'm immediately relaxed. Second, THE night I switched to a hard surface my dreams became incredibly vivid, and have remained so to this day. There's definitely a connection; anyway I'm very satisfied with my choice. Only problem is explaining it to girls ;)
I couldn't agree more. Last summer I bought the minimalist dense high quality futon. Yes it's much better than anything else. And I like the red pill also. It's basically the same thing as with minimalist shoes which improved my sprinting and running technique and goes well with learning POSE running.
I stumbled upon a very interesting blogpost where a physiotherapist (Ronny Liebmann, Leipzig, Germany) explained why springy matressese irritate your nervous system and diminish sleep quality. You need contact to the ground- in sleeping and running. No blue pill. :-)
Floor is a bit too hard. I've done it and it is ok, but the dense futon is nice and a little bit softer.
As an outdoor guide, I frequently sleep on a thin mat (1.5" thick) on the ground. I spent two summers sleeping 5 nights a week on a thin mat on the ground. I don't know whether it was sleeping on the ground or the 6+ hours of exercise a day I got while guiding, but my back never hurt and I was never sore. I also gained the ability to sleep on just about any surface in any position, mostly because I was so exhausted all the time. Now, even after having slept on a traditional mattress for 5 months, I can still get a good nights sound sleep on the ground without a pad on the occasion I'm in the field overnight.
There's a great book called The Indian Tipi: It's History, Construction and Use by Gladis Laubin, who spent lots of time living with American Indians on the plains in the early 1900s. There is a section of the book talking about what they slept on and there views on back health.
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