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Rest and Recover

A good night’s rest does more for your body than just eliminate that tired feeling. It’s also therapeutic and allows your body to heal from the day’s activities. So it’s crucial that you sleep on the right surface and do whatever you can to help you fall asleep — and, more importantly, stay asleep.

Naturally, the proper mattress is key to sleeping effectively. But sleep experts say the environment and a person’s sleep habits are equally important.

Among the innovations that debuted earlier this year at the Las Vegas trade show for the home-furnishings industry was a mattress designed to help people recover from the stress of daily life and a sleep system based on a scientific theory and diagnostic tool that evaluates how each person sleeps.

Spring Air, one of the nation’s largest mattress manufacturing companies, debuted its Ironman mattress series that was developed in conjunction with T3 Athletic Recovery Products.

“Anyone who has experienced an Ironman event, as a volunteer, spectator or athlete, recognizes the importance of rest and recovery. Now, there is a mattress designed for the everyday hero and the Ironman athlete,” said Dan Ederer, a founder of T3 Recovery Products.

Dubbed as the mattress for the human race, the Ironman T3 Recovery series is made of materials specifically created to help the body rest and recover.

The soy-based core is zoned to provide the most support in those areas where it is needed to keep the body in proper alignment. That is covered with layers of latex for comfort and to eliminate any pressure points. Finally, the mattress is covered in a fabric containing celliant, a specially formulated material that can be knitted, woven or incorporated into fabrics.

According to Dick Brass, president of T3 Athletic Recovery Products, celliant has been clinically proven to increase oxygen levels by as much as 29 percent, control body pressure points and relieve pain, all of which are necessary to recover properly and quickly. Additionally, the material can help a body regulate its temperature, avoiding extremes that cause a person to toss and turn, waking them from the deep sleep needed for recovery.

“Recovery is for everyone,” Brass said. “We all work hard and play hard and we need to recover.”

“We all go to our physical limits,” said Charles Dietiker, western divisional vice president for Spring Air. “You don’t have to be an Ironman to deserve recovery. You could be a man with children or a fireman. We all have a right to feel good, get a good night’s sleep and recover.”

Although the proper mattress is essential, it is only one-third of the equation, said Dr. Robert Oexman, head of the Sleep to Live Institute.

Oexman was commissioned by Kingsdown, a luxury mattress manufacturer, to help study the science of sleep and introduce its new Sleep to Live concept.

The concept revolves around a triangular formula that states that behavior, environment and equipment all play equal roles in getting healthy, restful sleep.

“Most people view sleep as a necessity, but they rarely understand how to maximize their sleep — hour for hour — or recognize sleep’s impact on overall health,” said Eric Hinshaw, Sleep to Live Inc. chairman and chief executive officer. “Our goal is to educate consumers about critical components of the ‘sleep triangle’ — behavior, environment and equipment — and offer all the tools to apply that learning every night.”

Using cutting-edge technology, the Sleep to Live retail concept revolves around information provided by each person about their sleep habits, as well as data collected through a special sleep evaluation package. Consumers interact with a computerized concierge to answer questions such as if they wake up at night, what position they sleep in and how they feel when they get up in the morning. The Sleep to Live retail outlets also have diagnostic equipment that physically measures pressure points as you lie on the bed.

All of this information is then used to find the proper bed, necessary sleep aids such as pillows with the proper firmness or softness for a person’s preferred sleeping position, sleep-inducing aromatherapy oils and lotions or light regulators, and modify habits, as needed, to create the optimal situation for a good night’s sleep.

“If you have a difficult time waking up, we can suggest different types of light therapy. Of if you’re up at night because you live near the highway or an airport, we can recommend a sound machine,” Oexman said.

For those who sleep with a partner, the company offers customized beds with different technologies, levels of support and plushness on each side to accommodate that person’s preferences.

Additionally, the company has introduced its Body Perfect bed with SMART technology that continually monitors the bedroom environment and how you sleep. The bed then automatically adjusts the support and comfort levels of the bed to increase the time you sleep. A hand-held device provides instant access to the information obtained by the bed, such as how long or how well you slept, and allows the user to make adjustments as desired.

For additional information about the Ironman T3 Recovery mattress series, visit www.ironman.com or www.springair.com; information about Sleep to Live is available at www.sleeptolive.com.

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