The length of your nap is critical.
The pros and cons of different nap times will be discussed below, but to give a broad overview of how awesome napping can be, here are just some scientifically-proven upsides:
Research by NASA (on pilots) showed that a 26-minute nap enhanced performance by 34% and overall alertness by 54%.
Napping boosts a type of memory process that increases creativity.
Particularly when accompanied by dreaming, a nap can be an effective tool for improving memory and learning ability.
Napping at least three times a week for 30 minutes or more has been associated with a 37% lower risk of death from heart disease.
Just knowing a nap is coming is enough to lower blood pressure.
There can be psychological benefits, as a nap is an easy way to get some relaxation and rejuvenation, and reduce stress.
What explains all the above mentioned benefits of some simple daytime shut-eye?
Put simply, science is learning that sleep has a far more active function than previously believed. When you nap, you shut off your mind’s interaction with external cues, the things you see, hear and feel. As a result, your brain is given an opportunity to organize and digest everything it’s learned.