Sleep plays a crucial role in promoting growth and development in children and adolescents. In addition to a well-balanced diet and regular exercise, taking care of sleep is also important for children to achieve their ideal height early. So, what time should children go to bed and how should they sleep to optimize and accelerate height growth?
How does sleep affect height?
The vertebrae are separated by intervertebral discs, which perform an important function of allowing you to move, bend, stretch, and rotate your spine. These discs then become a type of cushion between pairs of vertebrae and are made of cartilage tissue that provides high elasticity. When we sleep at night, the spine is not affected by the pressure of body weight, and therefore, the intervertebral discs can expand and stretch, which is synonymous with bone development.
Therefore, sleep deprivation can affect the process of bone formation in the human body. People with sleep disorders have lower bone density and reduced bone flexibility. In addition, the body also performs metabolic exchange, eliminates excess substances, and converts energy while you sleep. These activities help the process of height development to occur more smoothly.
How many hours of sleep should you get to increase height effectively?
During deep sleep, the body produces the necessary hormones for growth. That is why health experts recommend that children and adolescents in the height development period should go to bed before 10 p.m. Thus, you can achieve deep sleep around 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. in accordance with the body’s normal daily cycle. The ideal time to go to bed is 9 p.m.
Some tips to improve sleep for increasing height:
Avoid exposure to blue light from mobile phones and computers before going to bed to prevent sleep disturbances.
- Do not eat too much at night or right before bed.
- Sleep with a relaxed mind, limit stressful, and tired feelings that lead to difficulty falling asleep.
- Sleep in a dark, quiet room, avoiding overly bright light while sleeping because light makes the brain more alert.
- Check the air in the bedroom, ensure clean air and ventilation.
- Choose comfortable sleepwear, avoid tight-fitting clothes that can affect bone development.
- Keep your hands and feet warm for easier deep sleep.
- You can drink a warm glass of water 30 minutes before bedtime to keep your body warm. It acts as a sedative to help you sleep better.
- Avoid using nerve stimulants such as alcohol, beer, caffeine… at night or before bedtime.
- Sleep in a comfortable position by lying on your back or on your side, using a pillow that is at the right height.
- Sleep on a comfortable and firm surface, a mattress that is not too hard or too elastic to keep your spine straight and healthy.
You can also do some gentle exercise, listen to soft music, or read a few gentle pages of a book before going to bed for 20-30 minutes.
Effective Height-Increasing Exercises to Do Before Bedtime
- Prepare by kneeling on a exercise mat with your legs folded underneath you.
- Slowly bend forward, stretching both arms straight ahead with palms facing down towards the mat.
- Hold this position for as long as possible while focusing on breathing evenly, then return to the starting position and repeat the exercise 2-3 times.
Shoulder Hug Exercise
- Stand upright, take a deep breath and extend both arms.
- Exhale and cross your arms so that your right hand touches your left shoulder and vice versa, left hand touches your right shoulder.
- Use both hands to pull your shoulders forward and hold the position for about 30 seconds.
- Relax your body, inhale and extend both arms backwards.
- Exhale and repeat this movement 2-3 more times.
Wall Leg Raise
This is the simplest exercise that can help you fall asleep more easily. Lie straight on an exercise mat perpendicular to a wall, with your hips touching the wall (or a few centimeters away from it). Raise both legs up against the wall and let them rest against the wall, while placing your hands in any comfortable position. Hold this position for at least 10 minutes, then relax by lying flat on your back
Stretching neck exercise
This exercise helps to relax the joints and muscles in the head, neck, and shoulders, helping you to sleep better. The stretching neck exercise is similar to the common neck warm-up motion in exercise. You can stand or sit comfortably, then slowly rotate your neck clockwise, only moving your neck and head. Make sure to maintain a steady breathing rhythm during the exercise and repeat each rotation about 5-10 times.
In addition to stretching the muscles after exercising, the back-bending exercise also helps you to relax your whole body, reduce tension in the hips, thighs, and back, and support sleep. The steps are as follows:
- Lie comfortably on a yoga mat.
- Slowly bend both legs so that the soles of your feet touch each other.
- Extend both arms straight up over your head, with palms facing up and slightly clasped.
- Maintain this posture for 3-5 minutes, then lie down and relax before going to sleep.
Pre-sleep running posture
After a day of activity, your back should rest. This exercise allows you to stretch your hip and thigh muscles, relax your back, and prepare for better sleep.
- On the yoga mat, bend forward with both hands touching the floor, one leg bent close to your body, and the other leg straight back so that the toes touch the floor.
- Maintain a steady breathing rhythm, expand your chest, and focus on your back.
- Hold this position for about 5-10 seconds, then switch legs.
- Perform the exercise 3 times on each leg for a better night’s sleep.
This exercise is often combined with a chair or a stool that matches the height of the person, helping to relax the back muscles. You kneel on a mat, place a chair in front of you, then loop or place your hands on the chair and straighten your arms to grip the chair. You can also use a thin cushion under your knees, bend forward completely, and breathe evenly. Hold this position for about 5 – 10 minutes, then relax by lying on your back on the floor.
The backbend exercise helps to relax the back, tendons, and spine. At the same time, when children and teenagers do this exercise, it also helps to stretch the bones and promote height growth. The steps are as follows:
- Sit on a mat, legs straight forward.
- Slowly bend forward, slightly contract your abdomen, and slightly contract your hips.
- Stretch your arms forward and try to loop both feet.
- Gently push your chin to your chest and relax your whole body.
- Hold this position for 3 – 5 minutes, do 1 – 2 sets before going to bed.
This exercise works on both legs, helps to stretch and develop leg bones effectively. In addition, the exercise also helps to relax and reduce tension after a day of studying or activity. You can do it with the following steps:
- Lie on your back on a mat, both arms straight out horizontally, both legs straight.
- Slowly bend one leg, lift the other leg straight up, keep your buttocks still on the floor.
- Breathe evenly, lift your hips higher, and keep the leg position the same.
- Lift your hips and leg once for about 3 – 5 seconds, then switch legs and repeat 3 – 5 times before going to bed.
Plank can be practiced at many times of the day, including before going to bed. Lie face down on a mat, prop up your arms from your elbows to your wrists on the floor, slowly lift your whole body off the floor, and try to keep your body straight. Both feet touch the floor together with both hands as a support to hold this position as long as possible. Plank not only helps the body balance, supports sleep, but also reduces excess fat, stimulates bone growth.
A good night’s sleep each night helps improve overall health and supports a smooth process of height increase. Take care of your sleep early on by maintaining a regular sleep schedule and getting enough sleep each day. The 10 height-increasing exercises that we just shared, which can be done before bedtime, will help you sleep better and maximize your height potential
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