Napping is good for more than staving off grumpiness. Sneak in a quick power nap, and your brain will thank you. We already knew that a midday snooze has been linked to busting stress, sparking creativity, and improving motor and perceptual skills. But naps could also give your memory a power boost, according to a new study.
Researchers at Saarland University asked participants to memorize single and paired words. Immediately after, they were tested to see how much they remembered. Then, half of the participants took a nap while the others watched a DVD. After 90 minutes of screen time or shuteye, they were asked how many of the words they remembered.
The results showed that the group that watched the DVD remembered significantly less, while those who napped after the exercise remembered just as much post-Zzs as they had immediately after learning the information. "Even a short sleep, lasting 45 to 60 minutes, produces a five-fold improvement in information retrieval from memory," Axel Mecklinger, supervisor of the study, said in a statement.
The bottom line? Grabbing a quick snooze can help you learn and remember more. "A short nap at the office or in school is enough to significantly improve learning success," Mecklinger said. "Wherever people are in a learning environment, we should think seriously about the positive effects of sleep."