Energizing naps in downtown Montreal


The principle is simple: we sit in an armchair angled in an "S" position and let ourselves be carried off for a relaxation time of 30 or 45 minutes, if it's the first time.


The feature of this nap is to associate intracorporal music (acoustic low frequency vibrations) generated by the armchair to soft conventional music. After a few minutes of use, it's true that we are carried off by the sounds that harmonize with these vibrations. These last propagate from the calves to the top of the back and very quickly we're kilometers away from the urban frenzy around us, the effect is quite surprising.


For Nathalie Roy, the owner of Spa-Eastman, the relaxing virtues of napping are amplified by this Quebec system and notably reduces stress. "Intracorporal music plays directly on the central nervous system, through the spinal cord and gradually reduces tensions generated by stress", says she. "Too often we underestimate the negative effects caused by daily life and the nap is a very simple and very efficient way to compensate for that", she explains.


The nap, this rest that lasts on average a few minutes to an hour is more and more common and is loosing it's negative image. "We have to recognize that the nap is seen by many people like a type of laziness, especially because it happens during the daytime," continues Nathalie Roy. "But this image is changing, we are becoming aware that taking a nap is a way to recharge our batteries and recoup hours of missed sleep.  The result is immediately visible: we're in much better shape to continue our day!"


Napping has many benefits which include stress reduction, memory improvement, as well as concentration and the rebalancing of nervous functionality. Psychological as much as physical benefits then, for an activity that is not time-consuming since  having a nap of only several minutes allows one to have a break in one's day while recharging one's energy.


The more seasoned at this exercise practice the micro-nap or flash nap. Lasting less than 10 minutes, it takes advantage of the light sleep phase. Muscles relax, heart rate slows, which allows to relax the mind and body. However certain persons will need to train before quickly achieving this level of relaxation.

We are still far from Japan, a country where certain companies impose a nap to their employees, or China which has written napping into its constitution, but a little at a time, napping is becoming part of our customs... even in downtown Montreal.


David Nathan