Ah, Polyphasic sleep. The ability to sleep less and feel better, a very appealing concept.
For those of you who don’t know what polyphasic sleep is, it is any method of sleeping multiple times in one day with the intent of sleep significantly less than with a traditional monophasic cycle. You do this by tricking your body to go directly into REM sleep, the most beneficial stage of sleep.
Below is a comprehensive list of some of the more popular polyphasic schedules thanks to our (awesome) friends over at http://www.highexistence.com/alternate-sleep-cycles.
20 to 30 minute naps every 4 hours, resulting in 6 naps each day. The uberman cycle is highly efficient, and usually results in feeling healthy, feeling refreshed upon waking and extremely vivid dreams. Many uberman-users report increased ability to lucid dream as well. However, the rigid schedule makes it near impossible to miss naps without feeling horribly tired. Blogger Steve Pavlina tried the cycle for 5.5 months and had amazingly positive results.He only reverted to monophasic sleep so that he could be on the same cycle as his wife and children. Read his articles and updates on the cycle here.
One longer “core” nap that is supplemented with several 20-30 minute naps. The most successful variations that I have read about are either one 3 hour nap and three 20-minute naps or one 1.5 hour nap with 4-5 20 minute naps, all of which have equal amounts of time in between each nap. This cycle is much easier to adjust to than the Uberman and allows for more flexibity in nap times and in skipping naps when necessary. It is also still extremely efficient compared to monophasic with only 3-4 hours of sleep per day. Many bloggers have tried out this cycle and reported no negative effects on their health.
Bucky Fuller invented the cycle based on his belief that we have two energy tanks, the first is easy to replenish whereas the second tank (second wind) is much harder to replenish. So Bucky began sleeping for 30 minutes every 6 hours. That’s 2 hours a day of sleep! He reported feeling, “the most vigorous and alert condition I have ever enjoyed.” Doctors examined him after several years of using the cycle and pronounced him perfectly healthy. In fact, Fuller only stopped the cycle because his business associates were still stuck on monophasic cycles. This is by far the most extreme of the 4 alternate cycles, but also the most efficient.
Not even worthy of a diagram, the biphasic cycle is basically that of every college student in America. The biphasic cycle consists of sleeping for 4-4.5 hours at night, and then taking a 90 minute nap around noon. So not all that different, still more efficient than monophasic, but not by much.
How WakeMate can help:
A lot of our users have asked about polyphasic sleep and if the WakeMate can help in adjusting to a polyphasic sleep schedule so below is the answer:
1) The object of polyphasic sleep is to maximize the amount of time you spend in REM sleep. By utilizing the WakeMate’s optimal wake feature during your short periods of rest, you will ensure that you wake at the end of a or close to the end of a REM cycle.
2) One of the biggest hurdles in adjusting to a polyphasic sleep pattern is adjusting to waking multiple times per day from naps. As we all know from experience, waking from a nap at the wrong point will result is extreme sluggishness and grogginess. Again, the optimal wake feature can help you wake feeling as rested as possible from these naps.
We are thinking about making a special feature in our app to guide you through one of the above polyphasic schedules, but wanted to get our users’ opinions on the issue. Let us know if you guys would be interested!