4 ways to improve your sleep so you can play better golf

A good night's sleep can help you feel better and play better on the course.

A good night's sleep can help you feel better and play better on the course.

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Welcome to Live Well, Play Well, a health and wellness column that drops every Wednesday from residenfitness expert Rachel Bleier to help you make smarter lifestyle choices so you can feel better on and off the course.

Sleep is an essential part of our lives, and how much sleep we need is well-documented. 

According to the National Sleep Foundation, the average adult should strive to get seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Despite knowing this and knowing how important quality sleep is for our performance and overall health, we often fail to get enough of it. 

This leaves our bodies and minds less time to repair and restore themselves overnight, which is why we’re often unprepared for the day ahead. 

Improving your sleep actually starts with what you do during the day. Based on WHOOP data, there are four essential activities that can help you get a better night’s sleep. 

1. Get active

Several studies show that exercising and otherwise increasing your exertion throughout the day can help you feel more tired when your body is ready to sleep. That means adding a trip to the driving range or the course can help you get more and better quality sleep, giving you one more reason to play more golf. 

2. Hydrate

According to WHOOP data, members who report proper hydration throughout the day also typically sleep longer. Simply keeping a water bottle close by is a great way to remind yourself to take a few sips and can help you improve your sleep. Be careful not to drink too much water too close to bed though, as that can disrupt your sleep when you wake up to use the bathroom. 

3. Avoid caffeine later in the day

A cup of joe in the morning is a great way to perk up and get yourself going for the day, but if you’re the type of person who sips on caffeinated beverages all day long, it’s probably hurting your ability to sleep. That’s because caffeine stays in your system for at least four hours. So if you tend to hit a wall in the afternoon, you’re probably better off going for a walk or working out rather than reaching for a coffee. 

4. Avoid late night snacks

Eating too close to your bedtime can cause your body to start the digestive process when your body wants to be at rest. This is problematic because the digestive process is actually very active, meaning it can override your body’s desire to rest and keep you awake. 

Making simple changes to your daily routine can not only help you sleep better, but can also make you a better golfer. The more well-rested you are, the better prepared your mind and body will be to play well during your next round.

Plus, no one likes having to deal with a cranky playing partner for four hours. So do yourself and your playing partners a favor and get some sleep!