Does Sleep Position Indicate Intelligence?

New research suggests the position you sleep in may tell you a lot about yourself – your health, your age, perhaps even your education level. The study, commissioned by the Better Sleep Council (BSC), the nonprofit consumer-education arm of the International Sleep Products Association, found those who reported higher levels of education, such as graduate school or more, were less likely to sleep in Fetal position – the most common sleeping position among Americans (47%). Differences between age groups became apparent in reported sleep position preferences as well: Gen Xers and Millennials were more likely to sleep in Freefall position (arms and legs outstretched) than Baby Boomers.

Although sleeping position is largely a matter of perceived comfort and habit, the study found sleep positions affect sleep quality. For example, people who sleep in the Log position report getting a better night sleep than those in the Fetal. Also, people who sleep in the Starfish or Log positions are more likely to sleepwalk.

Our sleep positions can tell us other things about ourselves too. The study found that Log sleepers are more likely to consider themselves to be healthy, while introverts have the strongest aversion to the Freefall sleep position. Other insights include:

  • Women are more likely to sleep in the Fetal position compared to men (54% vs. 39%).
  • The Soldier (11%), Starfish (7%) and Log (6%) sleep positions are the least popular, yet those who sleep in these positions are more likely to say it has medical benefits.
  • Log sleepers are more likely than Fetal, Freefall or Yearner sleepers to say their mattress is very comfortable. It could be they feel this way because they’re more likely than other sleepers to lay down and test their mattress before purchasing.

BSC sleep expert Terry Cralle, RN, a…

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