How did you sleep? It’s a question most of us get asked on an almost daily basis. But let’s get literal here. How did you ACTUALLY sleep last night? On your side? On your stomach perhaps? Maybe you really pushed the boat out and decided to sleep on your back? So far, so uninteresting right? That’s probably why people aren’t too literal when it comes to that particular inquiry. But if you ask on a more global level – you may just find that certain groups have a much more compelling answer.
Here’s our roundup of the most surprising sleeping habits from around the world…
- Japan: Nap happy
The Japanese love napping on the job so much, they even have a word for it. Inemuri, which means “to be asleep while present” is far from being frowned upon in the offices of Japan. A mid work snooze is actually regarded as a sign of just how tired the napper is due to working so hard. Then again, with the Japanese averaging just 6 hours and 22 minutes of sleep per night (the least of any population in the world) maybe they’re just exhausted.
- UK: Naked ambitions
It turns out a whopping one-third of Brits confess to sleeping in their birthday suits. And why not? Sleeping in the nude has a whole host of social and health benefits, like creating a closer bond with one’s partner and better temperature regulation.
- Australia: Those that lay together
The aboriginal community regards co-sleeping or sleeping in groups as a ‘marked cultural preference’ according to University of Sydney Anthropologist – Yasmine Musharbash. Set up in rows of swag beds or mattresses, the idea is to protect the vulnerable, such as children and the elderly who sleep towards the center.
- Mexico: Hammock heavy
Hammocks are a huge industry in Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula with many inhabitants searing on the benefits of the humble hammock since colonial times.
7. Botswana and Zaire: Going off schedule
Sleep is a very fluid state according to many modern tribes in Botswana or indeed Zaire. Tribes will sleep when they feel like it, whether it’s during the day, in the evening, or the dead of night.
- Indonesia: Fast asleep
In stressful situations, the people on the Indonesian island of Bali have been known to exhibit something called “fear sleep”, or “todoet poeles”. On any such occasion, they can fall instantly into a deep sleep.