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Hacks

How to actually sleep on a train

The daily commute is something very few of us look forward to. If your only option is public transport, or you’ve come to your senses and realised you’ll save money, time and possibly your mental health by not facing traffic jams, we’ve got some news for you.

Commuting is actually good for you, according to scientists at the Moriguchi City Health Examination Centre in Osaka, Japan. Their study revealed that people who catch the train daily to work have lower blood pressure, lower rates of diabetes and less weight gain than cyclists or even walkers.

If your commute is long enough for a quick power nap (or long snooze, depending on where you live), there are certain tricks and tips to help you doze off quicker. Why not take advantage of your commute and grab a few extra minutes/hours of shut eye? Here’s our definitive guide for how to actually catch some ZZZ’s on the train:

TIPS FOR HOW TO SLEEP BETTER ON TRAINS

1. Memorise the design of your train
Next time you’re loitering in a hot, crowded underground train platform, take your eyes off your phone screen for a second. Pay attention to just where the doors are for when your train stops, and make a conscious effort to stand right near them, at either end of the platform (never in the middle). This makes it a lot easier to get onto the train, and you’re less likely to miss it, and – even better – you have a better chance of getting a seat.

2. Always aim for the window seat
There’s nothing worse than having a complete stranger begin to nod off in the seat next to you – especially on your shoulder. By choosing a window seat, you can lean up against the wall as much as you’d like.

3. Invest in quality noise cancelling headphones
It can be a challenge to get to grab some sleep amid the conversations of fellow commuters, crying babies and the occasional coughing fit on the train. Investing in a good pair of noise-cancelling headphones could make the difference between a calm, relaxing commute and a being regularly interrupted by ambient noise. You don’t even need to listen to music; just turn on the noise-cancelling circuitry and enjoy sweet, sweet silence.

4. Secure your belongings
Something that stops a lot of people grabbing shut-eye on the train is the fear of having their belongings stolen. We live in a pretty honest society, but there are always people who will take advantage of sleeping people to pinch a bag or wallet. The solution is simple – actually make sure that in order for your belongings to be removed, you’d have to move your entire body (and be woken up!). Whether that means spooning your laptop to sleep or wrapping your handbag strap twice around your wrist, get creative and rest assured knowing everything is secure.

5. Set an alarm
Don’t be put off sleeping for paranoia of missing your train stop. Don’t give in to the temptation of sitting on your long journey for an hour – wide awake – for fear of missing your stop. You won’t. It’s simple – set an alarm for 5 minutes before you need to disembark, and let your mind relax. The chances of you getting into a deep enough sleep to miss your alarm is unlikely, and if you do, it may be time to rethink your entire sleeping pattern.

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