How Your Position Affects Sleep Quality

When you are tired after a long day at work or taking care of the kids, what sounds better than heading to bed for a great night’s sleep? Not much more, that’s for sure. Here at Surrey604 we care about people, and we recently discovered that the position you sleep in affects your sleep quality. This information isn’t anything new. Yet, the fact that the position you sleep in can affect the quality of your sleep isn’t common knowledge. We are here to break the positions down for you so you can figure out which you go to naturally and which would be the best option for you.

The Soldier

In this position, the sleeper is flat on their back with their legs straight out and arms close to their side. If you are a sufferer of sleep apnea then this isn’t the most ideal sleep for you. Sleeping in the soldier position can cause you to snore more often.

As much as snoring keeps your partner awake and jolt your from slumber, there are greater risks to snoring than one might be aware. When you snore too much, your carotid artery, the artery that supplies oxygenated blood to your face, neck, and brain, can get thicker and have problems.

As for your spine, some reports say that this is the most natural way to sleep and if you can go without the pillow even better. Yet, some say this position can lead to lower back pain. This position requires a firmer mattress if you suffer from back pain.

The Starfish

This position also has the sleeper laying on their back. But instead of being rigid like the soldier, the starfish has the sleepers legs wide apart and bent while their arms are flailed above their head.

Both of these positions are great for folks suffering from acid reflux but this one comes with the same risks as the soldier, which are possible lower back issues and snoring. This position is also not a great one for people suffering from sleep apnea.

A firm mattress would also benefit people who like to sleep in this position. In fact, the firmer, the better. You can also try putting a pillow or rolled up towel under your knees if you are having problems with back pain.

The Fetal Pose

This position got its name from the way we all laid in our mother’s uterus when we were a fetus. Out of all the possible positions, this one is the most popular with sleepers around the world. This is one of the best ways you can sleep because you give your spine a rest in the natural way it was originally aligned. Current research has shown that this position is also the best when it comes to neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s. It seems the brain is better able to clear the waste which causes those diseases when sleeping on your side opposed to your back or stomach. This is the best position when pregnant women consider how they will sleep. The left side in particular. This is because of the way the organs are aligned so circulation can move easier while giving your heart a break. It also stops the baby from being smashed against the mother’s liver. It is advised that you stretch once in a while so your muscles can loosen and your lungs and diaphragm are freed for a minute or two. Try to relax your back as well so you can breathe more easily.

The Log

If you are a side sleeper who keeps their arms close to their body then you may fall under the sleeping position called the log. This is a popular position with 15% of the population choosing it every night. Since it is a healthy position to be in, the fact that so many people love it is a win-win situation.

In this position the sleeper keeps their back straight, which is great when they are dealing with sleep apnea. You spine is aligned in this position so back and neck pain should not be a problem. If you are having some trouble with hip pain put a pillow between your knees to relieve the pressure of gravity. The same idea works for your shoulders if you hug a pillow.

The Free fall

This is when you sleep on your stomach, which is the worst possible position and can affect much more than just your sleep quality. It puts too much pressure on your spine and can leave you with back and neck pain. If you are only comfortable in this position we highly recommend trying to train your body to sleep on your side. This can be done by slowing adding pillows or rolled up blankets to one side until you find that you are sleeping on your side. You can also try to prop up your forehead so you face down like a massage table so you don’t strain your neck when you keep it turned.


Whatever position you prefer, you now are familiar with the pros and cons of each so you can either enhance your already awesome sleep experience or start training your body to sleep in a new way.

Surrey604 Staff
Surrey604 is an online magazine and media outlet based in Surrey, BC. Through writing, video, photography, and social media, we secure an intimate reach to the public. We promote local events and causes.