Sleep: Sleep better and longer with strength training

Updated: 06/26/2022 – 21:49

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Sleep: Sleep better and longer with strength training

Photo: Getty Images/Thomas Barwick

Opt for dumbbells. Those who lift weights and train their muscles sleep better.

American researchers have studied which training helps to rest at night. Weight exercises benefit people with insomnia the most.

A few laps in the pool or sit-ups in the gym are proven to help you get a good night’s sleep. Researchers from Iowa State University in the US have now taken it a step further and investigated whether endurance training or strength training are better suited to optimizing a night’s sleep for insomnia.

The result: Strength training like push-ups or weightlifting worked better against sleep disturbances.

Sleep: 60 minutes of exercise three times a week is ideal for better sleep

The researchers divided 386 overweight people with high blood pressure and sleep disorders into three groups: the first trained on a treadmill or a bicycle, the second did resistance exercises, the third did a combination of the two. and a control group did nothing. The three groups exercised 60 minutes three times a week for a year.

All sports groups slept longer afterwards – but the gain in the strength group was clearest with an over 40 minutes: mini tears in muscles caused by strength training could eventually lead people to sleep longer. Because fissures need more sleep to heal, according to the study’s author.

When the muscle contracts

Strength training sometimes causes cramps. Although muscle cramps are usually harmless, pain is a clear signal from the body. Muscle cramps most often occur when electrolyte levels are out of balance. If the body is depleted, it lacks things like magnesium or calcium. To relax the muscles, 300-400 mg per day is recommended, sometimes athletes need more.

Magnesium is mainly found in whole grain cereal products, fish, poultry, broccoli, peas, kohlrabi, berries and bananas. A banana contains between 30 and 50 milligrams of mineral. Magnesium-rich mineral water could also serve as an additional supplier. In order to absorb calcium in the recommended daily amount of 1000 milligrams, it is better to include dairy products, legumes and nuts in the menu.


You can find more interesting information about sleep and sleep disorders here or on our topic page:

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