Is It Good for Your Back If You Sleep on the Floor?

The way you sleep determines whether you will suffer from backache or not. Sleeping on the floor is a good way to provide spine support. But you have to sleep in the correct way!

One of the main reasons why people suffer from back pain is the irregular posture they sleep in. You spend around one third of your life sleeping and if you are not spending it in the correct posture then it is highly likely that you are going to get backache. People usually think that having a comfortable and soft mattress is the best way to support the spine but is it really the case? 

Japanese households prefer sleeping on the floor and it is also common in popular culture too. The Count of Monte Cristo is one notable personality who despite his wealth slept on the floor as it had become his habit during his imprisonment years.

The question remains is: Is it good for your back?

Is Sleeping on the Floor Good for Your Back?

Most sufferers of back pain think that having a sleeping on a soft mattress can ease their aching backs. However, overly soft mattresses fail to provide the required support to the back, leading to poor posture during sleep and misalignments of the spine. 

Yes, sleeping on the ground can prove to be very beneficial for your back as it provides support to your spine and help you in keeping your back straight while lying down.

People who have tried it have found it extremely beneficial for their backs and have woken up feeling much better than before. Lying flat on your back with something marginally softer than the floor under you without a pillow is the ideal way to sleep. You spine will remain in the most neutral position if you sleep like this. 

Tips for Better Sleep on the Floor: 

  • If you want to remain comfortable on the floor then lying on a yoga mat is a good option. It is going to offer you the cushion that you will need for remaining comfortable when lying on the floor while still getting the back support from the ground beneath.
  • It is best that you sleep on your back to get the best results. The reason for this is that this position provides your spine the support that it requires. You won't find this benefit by sleeping on your stomach or your side.
  • Tightening of the hamstrings and the hip flexors is an outcome of sleeping in the fetal position, or on your side for a period of six to eight hours which can cause back pain. Moreover, sleeping in such a position would also tighten your pectoral muscles too, causing upper-back pain.

Be Prepared for the Discomfort for the First Few Nights

Sleeping on the floor is not going to be very comfortable in the early goings and you might want to sleep with many pillows. However, try to use a single pillow only when sleeping as the important thing is not to cushion the back but to support it.  

Some people think it is bad to sleep on the floor but that is totally incorrect. Although people who are overweight or are not accustomed to sleeping anywhere than on soft mattresses would feel a little sore in the mornings, but this is natural and is the same as the soreness you feel in the morning after an overnight exercise session.   

Who Should Not Sleep on the Floor?

Sleeping on the floor is perfectly safe for healthy individuals. However, if you are suffering from a health condition, which requires you to sleep in a special bed or if you reside in a basement that has concrete floors then it becomes impractical for you to sleep on the floor.

It is best to give this method a try for a few nights at least to check whether it is good for your back or not. After all, your back pain is the only thing you stand to lose by sleeping this way.

Experience from People Who Have Slept (or Are Sleeping) on the Floor

"I and my girlfriend have slept on the floor for a few days. In the beginning, it was only for a weekend while my grandmother was moving and we were around to help her. 

I lie on a soft couple of blankets while my girlfriend lies on a thin blanket only as she is slightly tougher than me. Lying on the floor is different than lying on the bed as the floor is definitely firmer when compared to the bed. Having slept on the floor for a few days, I realized that my back felt different. After sleeping on the bed for only a couple of hours, I woke up to sore hips and an aching back. This is why I don’t remain in bed anymore and watch Netflix while I am not in bed. "

"It was only by chance that I slept on the floor when I was travelling. I have now started sleeping on the floor permanently as my back stopped aching after that.

My backache is gone entirely. I did a little research on the internet regarding the advantages of sleeping on the bed which did not yield any results. Although sleeping on the bed is comfortable, it disturbs the natural body positions and is the main reason why so many people nowadays suffer from back issues.  

We make use of a heavy feather blanket which is quite old just for remaining warm. I am planning on buying thin camping mats to sleep on the floor although I think that the western children playground material is a good option too. We use a cheap synthetic blanket for covering ourselves."

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