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Mind Matters explores the power of sleep

MinRes employees and their families recently attended the latest in our Mind Matters series at our Osborne Park head office, with experts on hand with information and advice on how to enhance life and performance through sleep.

Hosted by MinRes General Manager Health & Wellbeing Jon Haines, the event included insights from sleep and performance expert Dr Ian Dunican and West Coast Eagles strength and conditioning coach Paul Turk on ways to help optimise sleep routines and boost overall wellbeing.

Discussions also covered lessons from elite athletes to enhance both work and home life, with key takeaway including:

  • Quality over quantity: While quantity of sleep is important (ideally 7+ hours), research shows that quality and consistency of sleep schedules should be the focus.
  • Pre-sleep activities: Pre-sleep activity can significantly impact sleep quality, emphasising the importance of calming activities over stimulating ones.
  • Sleep wearables: While sleep wearables can be useful for tracking sleep patterns over time, they’re most effective when analysed over two to three weeks.
  • Sleep disorders: There are more than 70 recognised sleep disorders and distinguishing between behaviour-related sleep issues and clinical disorders is crucial for effective treatment.
  • Sleep interruptions: Waking up during the night is normal, but avoid exposure to light mobile phones where possible. Relaxation techniques can aid in returning to sleep.
  • Eating before bed: Allowing a two to three-hour window after eating dinner before bedtime promotes better sleep quality.
  • Nap strategies: For those who have to nap, limit it to 20-30 minutes. A “napaccino” strategy (coffee plus 30-minute nap) may help to combat sleep inertia and boost alertness.
  • Recovery time: Providing adequate recovery time (24-48 hours) after shifts or travel is crucial for safety and performance, particularly for FIFO workers. Avoid driving and picking up the kids straight from R&R due to reduced alertness.
  • Weekend recovery: Allowing for additional sleep on weekends or free days helps offset any sleep debt accumulated during the week.

    As we continue to prioritise mental and physical wellbeing, incorporating these insights into our daily routines can lead to improved sleep quality, enhanced performance and overall vitality.

    Our Mind Matters series gives our team members the chance to learn about key mental health topics from a range of experts – just one of the many ways we’re shining a light on the importance of mental wellbeing.