Self Experimentation: Sleeping on the ground

22 03 2012

"You should be sleeping on a wooden board for at least a week!"

I’ve decided to experiment with sleeping on the ground. The idea first came to me, oddly enough, from watching Seinfeld.  Kramer realigns Elaine’s spine, she gets hurt again from sleeping on her mattress and Kramer says something like, “you should be sleeping on a wooden board for at least a week! It’s common sense!”  After thinking about it a bit, I wondered, why do we need beds anyway?  I don’t imagine humans evolved sleeping on beds, I mean imagine following a heard of antelope and lugging around a 50 pound mattress.  At best we slept on grass or some kind of mat, at worst the ground.  That was my main  jumping off point for trying this experiment.  After already deciding to try this experiment I did a little reading, such as this article, but for the most part I’m trying it out to sate my own curiosity.

You’re probably thinking, “you’re crazy Russell!  Everyone sleeps on a mattress, why even try?”  Here are a few of my reasons:

  1. My bed is extravagant, and I’m striving to be as minimalist as possible.
  2. Sleeping on the ground takes up a lot less room, and all of my sleeping gear can be folded up and stored if more space is necessary.  My room feels much more open without my queen sized bed taking up the bulk of it.
  3. If I am able to sleep on the ground, I can sleep anywhere in the world and not have to worry about it.  I won’t be reliant on my bed for a good night’s rest.
  4. There may be possible benefits, some outlined in this article.  Any benefits, aside from those listed above, would ancillary and are not the main reason for my experiment.

Below is a photo of the setup I’m going to be trying.  I have a camping mat, a bed cover, a sheet, a fleece blanket, and a comforter (these two blankets are good enough for southern California).  Note: I started on 3-19-12.

Since this is an experiment I should have some kind of hypothesis.  Hypothesis: sleeping in this situation will result no negative change, ie back problems, problems sleeping, etc.  I will note any differences in my life in future blog posts or on my ongoing experiment page.

Ciao – Russell