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THE COMFORT OF SLEEPING ON THE FLOOR

Updated on September 17, 2012
Lying on the carpeted floor with my dog, Simba.
Lying on the carpeted floor with my dog, Simba. | Source
My dog and I had a good nap time.
My dog and I had a good nap time. | Source

It's no magic carpet ride...

Would you sleep on the floor?

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Hardwood, tiled, cemented or carpeted, would you sleep on the floor?

Many old folks I know (male) prefer to sleep on the floor, than on a mattress with their wives; why is that? Do the wives of these men find it a better advantage for them sleeping alone? No more poking from the husbands. The wives do not have to reason about a headache. Hmm, sleeping on the floor is our topic here, not…

It is not that these men don’t want to touch their wives anymore, but as they grow older, common back pain problems occur. Upper back or lower back, men needed to lie down on their backs straight and flat. Women do too. And many other couples do practice sleeping on the floor together. There is no problem with getting intimate there…it’s just like having intimacy with a picnic basket next to you.

The comfort of sleeping on a flat surface

Ever been complaining about back aches? Try sleeping on a floor or flat surface to keep your body in alignment. It also reshapes the back with all the avoidance of developing a crooked back or simply building a good posture. It is the same experience if you are lying on a flat exercise machine that tunes up your spine. The less support your body is rested upon, the better it is to feel good getting up. It makes slumber better as you get use to sleeping on a hard surface.

Lying down on a sandy beach, on grassy areas, on a park bench or other flat surfaces, does it not just make you feel rejuvenated? It is true, is it not? It is like sleeping on nothing!

At home, I have tried nights sleeping on the floor with just a white sheet over the carpeted bedroom. My dog must think that I am invading his sleeping spot. Well, he liked sharing it with me and I like the feeling of closeness with my dog. The only disadvantage of sleeping on the floor at nights is that I was recently asked to move and sleep in bed instead.

“Sweetie, you don’t have to sleep down here in the futon or on the floor. Move and sleep in the bed, later.”

I did not want to argue with that sweet gesture accompanied with a sweet smile, so I replied like an obedient babe, "okay". Why am I sleeping with my dog, when I have him to sleep with? But I wanted to get rid of my right back-shoulder pains from sleeping in bed though I can sleep on my right side for long hours. I have been switching different pillows in terms of thickness, thinness, softness and hardness, but still I am getting backaches reaching up my neck turning into annoying migraines. Our mattress is of great quality but nothing compared to the comfort I am getting from sleeping on the floor the past nights. Now, I take my chances sleeping on the floor during nap times.

Floors are cooler during a hot season or ordinary hot days. Wooden floors have that magical essence that it is just beautiful to sleep on especially if they are shiny and wide Narra wood flooring like in my grandpa’s ancestral house. If a person is prone to using a mattress his whole life, he will find difficulties sleeping on a hard floor in the first few days. He will be experiencing lower back pains to his tailbone or perhaps caused by poor posture. To try harder lying on the floor, support your tailbone with a firm pillow and ease your way in finding your most comfort position. As you get use to the hard surface, you will find yourself gradually romancing with the comfort of it and ease your sleeping experience.


My pa made a bamboo bed similar to this. It is cool and cozy to sleep on.
My pa made a bamboo bed similar to this. It is cool and cozy to sleep on. | Source

Flat-hard beds

One example of a flatbed is a bed made of bamboo.

My pa made his own bamboo bed. He loves the cool and comfortable feeling of it. It is his permanent bed. My pa does sleep on a hard surface as he could and he is now in his 70s and does work wonders for him. How about my ma? You would probably wonder. “Oh, she is fine in her queen size bed, lol.” My pa suffers from lower (waistline) back pains and this is from sitting, squatting with his lower back bent forward on some work and especially if he is not constantly moving around. He has to be always on the go to keep the pain away. On weekends, he still does not rest doing nothing or he will feel the back pains again. When driving, he sits up straight. When at the table for mealtime, he sits up straight. When walking, he does not slouch; that is how he disciplines his posture. I remember my pa coaching us to keep our backs straight when eating, just how he demonstrated to us his eating position during his military training. Eating a “square meal” he said. But my brothers and I need to see the food on our plates!

When he is resting on his flat bed, he gets up feeling marvelous. He made his bed out from bamboo slats forming them into one bamboo board (similar to the image of a bamboo bed you see here). He uses a woven mat over it and sleeps on a hard-foam pillow he made for himself. The rubber foam he is using as pillow is the kind of foam used for cushioned furniture. He gets up in the mornings fine and relaxed than compared to spending a night’s sleep on a regular bed, spring or mattress. Back in my parents’ home, my pa also had made bamboo living room furniture- a wide sofa and chair made of strong bamboo frame and painted it chocolate brown. Where termites share land space in Asia, the bamboo used for furniture must be well treated to be termite resistant.

A bamboo or “woody grass” offers hardwood, does not expand so easily and if well treated, the bamboo does not crack nor break. The bamboo’s natural look provides comfort as it is cozy and light to use especially in furniture. Its strength makes the bed or any furniture durable and longer lasting. Its exotic beauty is now taken advantage much on other furniture such as tables, chairs, benches, closets, cabinets and beds. Bamboo has been widely used for its durability and eco-friendly material source in fixtures such as shelves, lamp stands and shades, wall and mirror frames, even flooring and fencing and are exported just like the bamboo beds.

Having bamboo furniture at home is the “green” thing which also provides the home a fresh, exciting and exotic ambiance.


If you are a minimalist and care more of the environment, try sleeping on the floor using an easy, comfortable material to sleep on and move around.

· The Japanese “tatami” mat

· Fabric or Yarn mat

· A Fleece blanket

· Plastic Woven mat

· Roll-away Bamboo mat

· Light Pad sleeping mat

· Self-Inflating mat

· The Philippine “banig” mats made from sedge or straw. A "banig" is a hand-woven mat traditionally made in East Asia and the Philippines in a variety of colours and attractive designs.

· Camping Sleeping Bag

· Sheepskin


Hand-woven "banig" in the Philippines

Source
A close look of a handwoven native mat.
A close look of a handwoven native mat. | Source
A large banig.
A large banig. | Source
A variety of attractive native mat designs. Sometimes it is too hard to choose which one to take home.
A variety of attractive native mat designs. Sometimes it is too hard to choose which one to take home. | Source
Banig turned into gowns for its festival.
Banig turned into gowns for its festival. | Source
This is one of the creative uses of the handwoven banig.
This is one of the creative uses of the handwoven banig. | Source

7 Sleeping Styles

1. Straight on back and flat – stretches the abdominal area and makes you feel great. Relaxes all your muscles, releasing from tension.

Con: Some people are not prone to sleeping flat on their backs also known as “the zombie position” and will feel the strain on the spine or pelvis.

2. Sleeping semi-curled on the side – the most common and preferred comfortable position. It helps maintain our spine’s natural curve adding a pillow clutch in between the legs.

Con: Prolonged side position makes it uncomfortable for the arm and shoulder, thus creating shoulder and neck pains.

3. Sleeping curled-up on the side- also known as the ‘fetal position’ where tummy is tucked, legs are folded curled up close to the chest, the spine and neck are flexed forward and the head is bowed, like the fetus curled up in a ball in the womb. This is a common position we do when the body reacts to feeling cold.

4. Sleeping straight on the side – almost similar to ‘sleeping curled on the side’ and would mostly benefit the spine as well by having a pillow tucked in between the legs. Also called as “the arrow position”.

Con: Prolonged side position makes it uncomfortable for the arm and shoulder, thus creating numbness on the hand and arm, and pains the shoulder and neck. Now, this eventually does not occur to all people. It is just a matter of finding your most comfortable position.

5. Sleeping on your stomach- as advised by my doctor once, this position is not really advisable for women for it is unhealthy to the breasts. The best position for a better breast development and care is sleeping on your side.

Con: Breast deformation

6. Sleeping with face buried in the pillow- coming home exhausted and you drop dead in bed with face down in your pillow, or your neck tilted to the side (chin is pointing upward). People often find this comfortable but only for a brief while. If you have been a stomach sleeper, give your head a turn to the side with your chin pointing towards your chest for a soothing flexibility and easy breathing or much better yet, change this long time sleeping habit and switch positions. If your pillow is too high or too hard, change it.

Con: This position hinders the natural and normal way of breathing and heartbeat during sleep and is extremely dangerous. It also puts a hard stress on the shoulders and strain on the neck.

7. Sleeping on back with arms extended alongside of head or above head- also known as “the surrender” is one of the coziest sleeping positions. You surrender your whole self without any care. You’ll find yourself drift off to sleep so easily.

Con: I don’t seem to know any, do you?


10 Benefits of Sleeping on the Floor

Combining the practice of sleeping on mattress and on the floor until you agree how the change of comfort sleeping on the floor can do for you and benefit you on:

1. Back alignment, solves back problems as physical therapists would recommend

2. Overall good posture

3. Better health

4. Adapting easily to sleeping on floor when visiting friends without inconveniencing the host. I was a host to my bestfriend and her family once coming from New Jersey. I have arranged my kids' room to share it with her two kids. The kids had fun turning the bedroom into a camp improvising tents out from their sheets and blankets. Two of them occupied a bunk bed and the other two slept soundly on the floor.

5. Travelling/Packing light

6. Saving space

7. Blissful stability with your partner (if you can convince your partner to sleeping on the floor)

8. Staying cool without the need for a/c

9. Easy and convenient maintenance like washing and storing

10. Giving you room to stretch out as much as you need


"Good night, sleep tight, have no back pains tonight." - coffeegginmyrice

≈♥≈

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    • greatstuff profile image

      Mazlan 4 years ago from Malaysia

      I find sleeping on the floor or on any flat surface difficult maybe 'cos I am not used to it. I solve my backache problem with doing regular yoga exercise. It helps.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      A regular exercise like your yoga rewards sure wonders. Keep up the good work, greatstuff!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

      What a very cleverly written piece here. You always amaze me with your wit and knowledge of such things. Your photo is precious of you sleeping with Simba. This reminds me of my granddaughter, Scarlett, as for some reason, she just loves to sleep on the floor! And now I know why. LOL Voted Way Up across the board. Keep these gems coming dear one. In His Love, Faith Reaper

    • Iamsam profile image

      Iamsam 4 years ago

      In summer season I like to sleep on the floor. It is great experience.

      Thanks.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      I am smiling ear to ear with your very nice comments, dear Faith Reaper. I can't breathe if I bury my nose in my pillow, but I can breathe fine if my nose is covered with my dog's fur, lol. He is so soft and cuddly.

      Children do love sleeping on the floor, like your granddaughter Scarlett (I love that name). I remember this same habit when I was just a little girl. We had lived in a big Spanish-type house with long and high wooden staircases at the front and back of the house. All around the house is wood. The bedrooms, common bathroom and walk-in closets were wide and spacious with windows welcoming lots of gentle breeze because these windows were wide as well, that can be pushed to the side to open and were made with Capiz shells. We had a main kitchen and a dirty kitchen (common in Filipino homes). What I love most is the very long and spacious "sala" or living room, all made of Narra planks around 7 to 8 inches wide and shiny because we apply floor wax and husk it every weekend. With the wooden flooring, my brothers and I like to play 'pull' with one riding on the sheet, then we take turns, that made the floor more shinier, lol. Aside from the floor rides and glides, we use the natural holes from the Narra flooring to shoot our game of marbles! And of course my favourite thing to do-- I love lying down on the cold floor and would just fall asleep with nothing over it after playing with my paper dolls or doing some colouring on colouring books. It makes my ma wonder finding me at most times asleep on the floor instead of my own bed. Our housemaid would just leave me there because I look so comfortable. I guess, it was the comfort I was getting from the wood that felt cold and the smell of hardwood.

      Thank you Faith Reaper!!

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Hi Iamsam! It is true that sleeping on the floor in summer season is a great experience. I actually started this when the bed and duvet felt too uncomfortable for me especially on humid nights and mornings. You see, the duvet should be out only during wintertime, but we have never kept it aside because we like to snuggle in it. I do have a thinner woven blanket but still it gets too hot in bed. To where the bedroom is facing where the sun shifts sometimes, it could really be draining. Oh well, I am also getting close to that 'age', you know, lol.

      Thank you for dropping by. I am happy to see you. Take care now and sleep well, Iamsam!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      ...well I have a new one for you: I sleep on the grass outside with my cats - lol - it's called Communing with my cats - and the neighbors are probably looking outside their windows and saying to themselves - "What is that crazy fook doing now?" lol

      I can run around my neighborhood totally naked and waving a gun and they never blink but laying down on the grass with my cats - holy shite that man has gone absolutely bonkers - lol lol

      lake erie time 3:38am

      You have something my dear friend that many writers would love to have - style and panache - you can't teach it at school - you either have it or you don't - and you have it - like Tiffany's has diamonds

      High winds by the lake tonight - this cottage may end up in the land of Oz - nothing like high winds by the lake when you live so close to the water ......

    • profile image

      whowas 4 years ago

      Well, what an interesting hub!

      In my youth I travelled quite a lot to all manner of places and have slept in a very wide variety of circumstances as you might imagine - including on the floor. Sometimes that would be a dry, dirt floor; perhaps terracotta tiles, or a rush mat; at other times soft. lush grass or polished wooden boards. In every case, I seem to remember that I slept well.

      I suspect my body was more subtle then and my mind less troubled than sometimes these days.

      I think that there may well, in certain circumstances, be considerable health advantages gained by sleeping on a hard surface, or at least a flat one. Particularly, as you suggest, in cases of a bad back.

      One option that is some way between sleeping in the squishy comforts of a luxury western mattress and the austerity of a rush mat, is the Japanese futon - which is a sort of hard mattress that is rolled out onto the floor. Now that, is very comfortable.

      Thanks for an interesting hub.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Good morning, Epi! It's gloomy here today and your high winds over Lake Erie must have sent us lots of rain last night, hahaha, which I didn't even hear. Just got up now and saw the wet backyard.

      I laugh and laugh at your funny thoughts 'bout your neighbours if ever they find you with your cats sleeping on the grass. Why shouldn't they just join you? It would be a party with meows, purrs and beer!

      I thank you from the bottom of my heart of the very flattering and inspiring thoughts 'bout my little work and style. Really, I got writing style?? I just write whatever comes out my head. And I awoke a little early this morning because I couldn't sleep again. An idea for a hub was hovering inside my head. I'll work on it later. I still have to look for jobs first.

      Hope your place will be fine and the whole Erie with the high winds by the lake. Try not to get wet outside or you'll multiply (remember the movie Gremlins?). Stay dry and warm! Good day to you, Epi!

    • CrisSp profile image

      CrisSp 4 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

      Great job coffeegginmyrice! Very useful and informative. However, I don't think I'll be comfortable sleeping on the floor. Maybe, I'd just buy that bamboo frame bed and sleep without a mattress, put quilt or just a blanket to cover it and snooze. That will do but not the floor! I'm scared of anything that will crawl on me. Lol!

      Great photos and those shoes are very creative! Love it!

      Voted up and across and will share!

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Hello whowas! It is so nice of you to share your youth experience sleeping on the floor(s) and that it had worked well for you. In our youth, we can't be really picky where to sleep especially if we are visitors to another home. My pa would say, "Be a cowboy. Act like one and don't be choosy." So, when comes the Holy Week vacation to my pa's island hometown, my grandpa's ancestral home gets packed with relatives coming from Manila and Cebu and even relatives travelling from the U.S. and Canada. The oldies get the beds, my cousins and I sleep on the floor. We are provided with large "banig" native woven mats that covers from end to end of the remaining space on the floor. I always like the feeling of how spacious it is, pillows everywhere and you can do anything from the floor. We played cards and Scrabble on our mats.

      Sharing to you here a website of Japanese futons- http://www.jlifeinternational.com/houseitems/futon...

      I guess, I want to own one one day. Cheers to you, whowas! Have a comfy sleep!

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Good morning, Cris! Yes, the crawlers, you're afraid of them. You might end up crawling away from sleeping on the floor if ever, lol. A bamboo bed is really nice. Remember those nipa huts back home? In my childhood, I used to walk to my playmate's house made of nipa. Small but very cozy. I sit along their bamboo ledge, and other times climb above it and sit right on the square window. I also like to squat on their bamboo flooring because it is cooler, or sit on the bamboo steps where I like sliding the soles of my feet to the smooth round shape of the bamboo. The only thing I got scared of were not critters or crawlers, but seeing the chickens below the house from the gaps of the floor bamboo slats. You know, I'm scared of chickens! Lol!

      Those shoes, I would like to have a pair. Remember too the 'banig' slippers? Thank you dear Cris for voting up and sharing. I was weaving this hub with fun. Stay indoors today and cheers!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      What an interesting topic! I have never had trouble sleeping on the floor; a little stiff when I wake up, but I sleep quite well.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Good for you, too, billybuc! Later in the afternoon, I'll nap on the floor to catch up from last night's stolen sleep. Thank you, billybuc and have a nice day!

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Really interesting Hub with great suggestions for back pain sufferers. Epi is right about your writing too.

      One suggestion for the back and shoulder problems is to find a good beginning yoga class and begin those amazing streching and strengththening exericses. Even Tai Chi will help. I do not mean the high temperature yoga which sounds like torture to me, but a gentle basic class.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      xstatic, you're so kind to suggest about yoga and Tai Chi. Thank you for being thoughtful. I'll do my yoga facing HubPages, lol (just kidding)! I can follow them from Youtube. With the basics of yoga for beginners (starting with the hands and knees), I hope my dog won't wonder if I am imitating him or he can do it with me. :)

      Cheers, xstatic! You made my day. Thanks for the tips!

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      You are welcome! Our Papillion (dog) does the "down dog" yoga pose, sometimes even when told.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Ohoho, really? That's good your Papillion can also do it anytime when told. That's what they do when they stretch after waking up, isn't it? So cute to see the dogs like this with their butts up; so cute!

    • mishee18 profile image

      Michelle Yap 4 years ago from Philippines

      I love sleeping on the floor just with a blanket and a pillow with my sister. When I was younger, banig is my bestfriend, I usually pull its "fiber" or whatever the name, I don't know :p until it looks like a dog played with it.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Hahaha! Brings back memories the way you said it here, mishee18. I think I did that too, slowly pulling them out especially along the sides and it made holes! And it is washable too, right? I've seen my ma wash the banig and dried it under the sun. Thanks for dropping by!

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Very enjoyable read. I've always enjoyed sleeping on the floor whenever the opportunity presents, like when we have extra guests and beds are short or when the whole family unites and we need to be together and talk late into the night. It is real fun and yes it is definitely better both in terms of comfort and feeling healthier.

      Wonderful hub and I really enjoyed the beautiful pictures.

      Voting up, useful and beautiful.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Rajan, how nice to see you again! Thank you for rolling into one of the "banigs" in this hub, lol. The hospitality we give to our visitors staying with us during their vacations is indeed full of fun moments...the gathering, the cooking together, the shopping, the outings, the going to church as a group, the story-telling over cases of cold beer, and the young ones sleeping on the floor (and yes as you've said- "we need to be together and talk late into the night).

      Thanks so much, Rajan for enjoying this hub and voting! Have a great relax day ahead!

    • Miswa profile image

      Miswa 4 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      I could sleep anywhere! Before I enjoyed the comforts of sleeping bags, I got to use those banigs which is so cool. I even love the smell of those banigs being stored in those wooden chests for a long time hahaha!

      When we got foreign guests staying over at our house, I had no choice but to let them sleep on the floor. I only had to lay out my inflatable mats that i use for camping and it's sweet sleep for everyone. I never had to worry because they're still young (doesn't complain of back pains) and they do not fuss of not getting to sleep on a nice bed. In fact, they're thankful of having a place to sleep for FREE!

      My floor is always open for those who want to sleep on it...not my fault if they awaken with licks from my dogs.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Hi Miswa, so happy to see you again! The licks from your dogs-- imagine them as added BONUS for your foreign visitors, lol! Kisses, kisses, kisses!!!

      Glad you could spare a space in the sala for them to sleep and rest and with your camp portable mats. They don't really fuss about anything. They travel 'round the world and it is great for them to try the least conveniences in life in other countries. Your foreign friends are "real cowboys"!

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 4 years ago from Nepal

      I have slept on the floor and I also find it very comfortable. Thanks for sharing your views.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      The comfort of sleeping on the floor for Vinaya is very comfortable! Cheers!

      Thanks Vinaya for rollin' by.

    • profile image

      ROS 4 years ago

      I have the same neck-turning-into-migraines pain. I'll try to sleep on the floor. Let's see how this goes.

    • Nomascus concolor profile image

      Nomascus concolor 3 years ago from A Country called Earth

      I always sleep on the floor when I take the night boat to my parents, and I have to say I feel quite refresh afterwards. At first, I probably tried every position you talked about, but now I fall asleep straight away, just like in a normal bed, except that my back usually feels stronger in the morning. I will not be selling my bed just yet, but it would be cool to have a house with no beds in it - very much out of the box and minimalistic. Anyway, it's a very refreshing hub!

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 20 months ago from Germany

      What an interesting topic to write! I think I will sleep on the floor again because our bed is no longer hard for me to sleep on. I love sleeping on the floor in the Philippines and really, I did not have back pain. I think I just have to put a warm blanket on the floor because I don´t have "banig" here and besides that, it´s getting colder everyday. Winter is around the bush.

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