With more athletes being put on trial for steroid use, sports stars are constantly searching for legal ways to improve their game. A recent study shows that the answer could be as simple as getting a good night’s sleep.
Researchers studied the performance of Stanford University basketball players after increasing the amount they slept per night by about an hour and a half. They discovered that both speed and shooting accuracy improved after the players got more sleep.
“Following multiple weeks of sleep extension, elite athletes demonstrated improvements in specific indicators of basketball athletic performance including higher shooting percentages and faster sprint times,” said lead author Cheri D. Mah, M.S.
Based on these findings, Mah made a list of suggestions for athletes looking to improve their performance. Some of her recommendations include making sleep a priority as part of a training regime, going to bed and waking up at the same time every day and, if possible, taking short naps during the day.
Mah also conducted studies involving other Stanford sports teams such as swimming and tennis and obtained similar results involving sleep and athletic success.