'Military Trick' to Beat Insomnia in Less Than Two Minutes

Wednesday, 5 September, 2018 - 06:00
London- Asharq Al-Awsat

A military secret for combatting sleepless nights has been revealed recently. And unlike what most people may think, it doesn't involve marching through a desert with heavy equipment on your back.

The US military developed a secret method for its pilots to get sleep in two minutes flat over fears they could nod off at the controls, according to the London-based Evening Standards newspaper.

The method was revealed in a 1981 book called “Relax and Win: Championship Performance”, which gave readers advice on how to “improve sports performance and reduce injuries by learning to relax and release tensions prior to competition.”

One of the methods detailed was claimed to be developed by the US military with a 96% rate after six weeks of practice involving about two minutes of mind and body preparation, which should people reach the land of nod in under 120 seconds. Men's lifestyle website Joe.co.uk rediscovered the old method, sending it viral. Many people suffer from disrupted sleep, and as many as a third claim to have insomnia, the relaxation technique has been hailed as a blessing.

The US Military method involves the below steps:

1. Relax your face, including your tongue, jaw, and the muscles around your eyes.

2. Drop your shoulders as low as they can go. Then relax your upper and lower arm on one side, and then the other.

3. Breathe out, and relax your chest.

4. Finally, relax your legs, from the thighs to the calves.

5. When your mind is clear, try to picture one of the following images: Lying in a canoe on a calm lake, nothing but blue sky above you; Snuggled in a black velvet hammock in a pitch-black room; Saying “don’t think, don’t think, and don’t think” over and over for ten seconds.

The US army put a disclaiming on the method, saying: “The bottom line when it comes to getting restful sleep is doing what works for you. There is no magical formula other than listening to your body.” However, they found in testing that it was 96% successful.

Insomnia affects more people than previously thought and comes in two categories. Type 1 insomnia is when you can't get to sleep at all, and Type 2 means you may get to sleep, but will wake up at least once during the night. There are numerous health concerns related to a lack of sleep, from diabetes to heart disease and depression.

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