Is Sleeping On The Floor Good For The Back? Is Japanese Futon Good?

People sleep on the floor for various reasons. While some might use the floor for therapeutic concerns, others do it because it’s a part of their culture. Either case, both types have claimed on getting better sleep and refreshed feeling. Whether sleeping on the floor is good for you or not, it is mostly dependent on how you sleep and on the reasons.

Our topic of discussion today is entirely focused on the benefits of sleeping on the floor and how Japanese futon completes the equation. In fact, before we go into explanation, here’s a question: ever wondered how a good bed can affect your routine life and health?

Answer: Good deep sleep is not only essential for your daily routine but also for your body functions.  2/3 of the average life of a person is spent on bed and if the bed is not right the sleep is not right which clearly indicates the significance of a good bed on our sleep. According to Japanese who are known for their great healths and ever so youthful looks claim that: no mattress is a good mattress for a deep sleep.

That might not sound right to ears, but centuries of their believes and culture reveal how living a life with minimalism and staying close to Mother Nature is the only way to living young and healthy. When you sleep on the floor or a traditional Japanese futon, you are precisely using the floor. Unless you’re sleeping platform is good, you will wake up at intervals during the night and this does not mean good deep sleep.

During sleep our body rejuvenates and recovers from illness. For the back to be perfect, a good mattress which is firm and not soft and the right posture is important. When the mattress is too soft like the regular beds, the body weight pushes the body downward when you sleep. This puts the spine in incorrect position and becomes the reason of back pain. Incorrect posture and improper alignment of the body gives backache.

Let’s see now, how good or bad the floor can be for your back:

The major concern is the health condition of the person. If you have never slept on the floor or on Japanese futon before then the answer can be both yes or no. While as a Japanese person or a local of Japan, you have all reasons to continue sleeping on your traditional Japanese mattress. For someone who is transitioning from the regular soft bed to Japanese futon or floor, it’s recommended to consult your physician first and then proceed.

The Floor is said to Be Good for Back and Spine

Although not enough scientific information supports this topic but what is know is that, regular soft mattress does not provide enough support for the proper posture and increases the chances of misalignment of spine. On the other hand, sleeping on a hard surface is very significant both for the back and spine.

When you sleep on a firm mattress, your back stays straight and with repetition of this process continuously the back gets in its straight and natural shape. People who have tried this transition have claimed on it to be extremely beneficial for them- they woke up with less back pain then before. For more supportive condition, a traditional Makura will keep the spine in a more neutral position.

Ideally, the best way is to lie flat on your back without a pillow to keep your spine in the most neutral position possible. Makura is the traditional pillow used by Japanese that is filled with buckwheat hull and is smaller than the regular pillows.

Tips for Sleeping on the Floor

If you’ve slept on a traditional bed your entire life and are considering on moving to the floor, whether it’s for a better back or a healthier and productive lifestyle, the things to remember are:

  • Use a thin mat underneath the mattress, like a yoga mat or the Japanese tatami mat for some cushion and for maintaining the benefits of a hard surface.
  • Sleep straight on your back to maximize the benefits. Sleeping on the side or on stomach does not help.
  • Try sleeping with the knees bent as well, it allows the lower back and sacrum to decompress. Moreover, the weight of your body is equally distributed.
  • For obvious reasons, consider using the carpeted area than plain tiled or wooden floor.
  • Instead of any other approach, use authentic Japanese futon bed for the real benefits health benefits.
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