Sleep like a baby? No thanks. How about like a linebacker? Sleep tips from the NFL...

Sleep like a baby?

No thanks. You know how the joke goes. “I woke up crying every three hours.”

Better to sleep like a linebacker.

The Wall St. Journal reports that NFL coaches put a lot of thought into sleep.

A good night’s sleep can give a player an edge. But if he’s just flown across three time zones and has a 1:00 PM game, forget about edge. He’ll be lucky to stay awake in the huddles.

A key consideration is how much sleep is necessary. Many players are in their early 20s. They still need to sleep like teens, who require about nine hours per night.

But for a busy NFL player, it can be very hard to carve out a solid nine. That’s why coaches look for any small advantage to give their players the rest they need.

The WSJ article notes two factors that are good sleep tips for everyone…

1) Sleep in a pitch-black room. As I’ve mentioned before, you body produces melatonin while you sleep. Melatonin helps regulate your sleep/wake cycles. But too much light in the room reduces your melatonin output. So… No TVs left on. No lamps. Window shades down.

2) According to sleep therapists, 68 degrees is the perfect sleeping temperature.

Get those two factors in line, then put your head on the pillow and count footballs soaring over goal posts. 3… 6… 9… 12…

“Sleeping Your Way to the Top” Kevin Clark, Wall St. Journal, 11/14/12,

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