Peep: While You Sleep — Tracking Wellness Scientifically

Peep: While You Sleep — Tracking Wellness Scientifically
Arts & Culture

Tracking changes in behavior and sleep can lead to increased REM cycles and therefore increased well-being.

Maria Vrachnos
  • 22 september 2011

In a world which we no longer see as flat, we’ve set our sights on a new frontier, the universe that lies within ourselves. During our exploration of the observable world, science helped to quantify and explain what we saw. As we turn the looking glass inwards, modern explorers are faced with the obstacle of finding metrics and tools to examine feelings and explain the intangibles of the human experience.

Society is wielding the tools of science and technology to improve our understanding of Wellness. For groups like Quantified Self, coupling apps and observational programs have created a census of their day to day lives, offering up a wealth of information for self improvement. Many members quickly change problems into solutions by answering the bottom line question : ‘if you don’t feel better, what’s the point?’

Recently we presented ‘Health and Wellness’ trends in Amsterdam and discussed future directions across several categories. A favorite example from this research is Mappiness, which gives a baseline of one’s emotional state. There is a veritable toolbox of services that highlight factors that influence emotions, some help you even while you sleep. Plagued by sporadic lengths of sleep and grogginess, one of our analysts put himself under the microscope to determine how recent developments could help. We learned how, in the mysterious laboratory of the boudoir, bedding, mattresses, apps and multifunctional design are becoming popular aids.

By tracking sleep patterns for a ten day period via Sleep cycle, which uses the iPhone’s accelerometer to show tossing and turning in the night and its inverse link to deep sleep REM cycles, a binary of good sleep was created. Any ‘touchy-feely’ emotional tracking one might expect is replaced by a performance aspect. There is an almost mechanistic approach to ratcheting up how effective my sleep could be. Day one, going to sleep early enough to get a full eight hours. Day two, no TV an hour before going to bed. Day three, taking a cold shower before going to bed (lower temperatures help initiate REM sleep quicker). Every daily behavioral tweaks increased REM cycles. These focused improvements mimic coaching tactics for high octane athletes, incrementally inching one closer to an all time personal best.

A recent NY Times article examines a range of products that provide consumers with performance sleep options: Performance sheets from basketball coaches, sponsored by NFL players, that ‘look like a bed and fit like a sneaker.’ music compilations that hit the beats-per-minute sweet spot for sleep, infusing ‘nanotechnology’ to herbal scented pillow cases, turning the pillow into a ‘vehicle for well-being.’ We are all driven to perform at our best and being well rested is an integral part of that. Tracking and behavioral changes helped our analyst find an equation that increased number of REM cycles and their quality; key to overall well-being. With all these new options that help understand emotional states and monitor performance metrics, will health insurance companies, gyms or bosses be tempted to step in to help achieve optimum performance?

By Maria Vrachnos and Wesley Robison

Photo: CBS San Francisco

Arts & Culture

IKEA Is Letting Kids Design Its New Line Of Toys

Travel Yesterday

30-Year-Old Photographs Used As Travel Guides

A new photo series revolves around tracing the origins of images from the past

Technology Yesterday

Album Turns Into Something New Each Time It’s Streamed

Bill Baird's new album explores the relationship between time and music through a website crafted by design team, One Pixel Wide


Get PSFK's Related Report: Sports Debrief

See All
Health Yesterday

VR App Prescribed For Pain Relief

A pharmacy chain in Sweden is stepping away from tradition to develop a happy place for the pain-afflicted

Retail Yesterday

Banks Are Coming Together To Create A New Payment Network That Rivals Venmo

A number of financial institutions are collaborating to make a new person-to-person monetary system called Zelle for their customers

Related Expert

Gavin Andresen

Digital Currency, Security, Community

Media & Publishing Yesterday

Pocket Camera Aims To Facilitate The Struggles Of Live Streams

The Mevo helps resolve the complexities of streaming video with an intuitive setup and smart editing controls

Food Yesterday

Startup Believes Traceability Will Help Disrupt The Multivitamin Industry

Ritual is a daily supplement for women that traces every ingredient back to its source

Food Yesterday

Photo Series Brutally Murders Some Of Your Favorite Fast Food

The portraits by artist duo Ilka & Franz do away with mealtime regulars in a way that is both beautiful and humorous


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed october 26, 2016

Health Expert: Nutritional Meal Replacements Are A Solution To Corporate Wellness

Ample Foods Founder Connor Young explains why supplements are the next food trend coming to the workplace

PSFK Labs october 25, 2016

The Keys For Exceptional Performance On And Off The Field

PSFK Labs' new report highlights five important insights for businesses to perform better than the competition

Mobile Yesterday

Coffeemaker Teaches You How To Make The Perfect Cup

The device comes with an accompanying app that guides novices and experts alike through the brewing process

Op-Ed Yesterday

General Electric: Lighting’s Impact On Sleep Is More Than The Off Switch

Jeff Patton, General Manager of Connected Home Products at GE Lighting, uncovers how lighting technologies can affect our sleep cycles

Brand Development Yesterday

The Story Behind How LYNK & CO Created A Car Brand From Scratch

Head of Design Andreas Nilsson describes which values were most influential in determining the identity and design direction of the new auto company

Travel Yesterday

Architect’s Design Presents A Radically New Approach For New York’s Penn Station

The firm of Vishaan Chakrabarti has envisioned a bright community and travel hub in the heart of the city

Fitness & Sport Yesterday

Editorial Roundtable: Building An All-Encompassing Performance Suite

WHOOP, ShotTracker, Rithmio, PlaySight, STYR Labs, EverybodyFights and Lift / Next Level Floats on the partnership opportunities available in health and fitness

Gaming & Play Yesterday

Fantasy Game Responds To Each Player’s Emotions

The card battling venture measures responses through a Bluetooth clip to adjust the experience accordingly

Luxury Yesterday

Carry A Map Of NYC On A Handbag

The bag from Bottega Veneta has been designed exclusively for Bergdorf Goodman to celebrate New York City

Technology Yesterday

Roaming Robots Crawl Around Your Body To Do Small Jobs As You Go About Your Day

A new concept wearable developed by researchers at MIT and Stanford are fully functional bots that live on your clothing

No search results found.