Which Sleep App Is The Best To Use?

Exercise | Sleep

Posted on October 23, 2014 by Jenny Cromack

personal trainer sleep app analysis

You don’t need to be an expert to know that a good night sleep can set you up for the day ahead, anyone who has had a disturbed nights sleep can feel the effects the day or days after. However, what people underestimate is how insufficient sleep can play a massive part in work productivity, concentration, energy levels and success with your training goals.

A lot of people think that in order to achieve the best results in the gym you need to train hard and eat healthy, this is totally true but it is also important to ensure that your body is getting enough rest and sleep.

Back in June 2013 I came across a Sleep App called Sleep Time that allows you to track the quality of your sleep. I instantly started using it and was shocked at the efficiency of my sleep. I worked on improving my sleep habits and soon began to feel a lot better and instantly felt better in the mornings. Back in 2013 I wrote a blog and shared it with the motive8 community and it was great that a number of people reported feeling better for using the app and trying to improve their sleep efficiency. click here to read my blog.

As we know everything improves with time, I have the up to date version of Sleep Time and over the past month have reviewed this and two other sleep apps Sleep Cycle & Sleep Meister to see how they all compare. I will give you a brief back ground of each one.

How Do These Apps Work

All three sleep Apps are alarm clocks that monitor and analyse your sleep cycles to wake you up in your lighter sleep phase, allowing you to wake up feeling bright eyed and bushy tailed and ready for the day ahead. They use your smart phone or tablet to sense your subtle movements throughout the night and graphs your sleep cycles.

As you sleep you go through different states of sleep that range from deep sleep to light sleep. A fixed alarm is like the lottery, if you are lucky for it to wake up in a light sleep you will wake feeling refreshed if however you are unlucky and are woken when you are in a deep sleep, well we all know how that feels.

These apps monitor your sleep phases and will alert you during a window of time that you define at your lightest sleep cycle ensuring you feel great every morning.
Sleep Time was developed using proven sleep science and has worked with Stanford University to create a best-in-class, proprietary algorithm that analyses your sleep cycles.
So which one is the best?

Sleep Time

Sleep Time App

So Sleep Time has updated a lot since June 2013 however the wonderful thing is it is still free on the app store. Do not let the idea of it being fee put you off. It is still fantastic and a massive step up from its older version. As soon as I logged on to the new version it looked crisper and more advance, everything was a lot easier to navigate so perfect for anyone who hasn’t got much App experience.

I found it much easier set the alarm and the next morning was impressed with how much more detailed the graphs were to show my sleep efficiency. Although I had no problems with the previous versions of sleep time I believe that the accuracy is much better, this could be however down to having a newer iPhone.

Simple things such as an additional snooze option to allow you to lay in bed a little before getting up may be beneficial for some people. The alarm music has also got a lot better giving you better options not everyone works well waking up to an air raid siren!

Sleep Meister

Sleep Meister App

Just like the Sleep Time app, Sleep Meister is free in the apple app store and works the same. It requires IOS 7.1 or later and is compatible with the ipad, ipod touch and iPhone (optomised with iPhone 5. Although it is slightly different to set up and the lay out of the graphs are different it offers the same level of information however I personally think it is not as advanced as the sleep time app, but don’t just take my word for it the Sleep Time app is ranked higher on the app store.

Sleep Cycle

Sleep cycle App

So Sleep Cycle is the only app I paid for ( it was only £1.49) I was curious to see if paying for a sleep app would give you a higher quality result. Although at first glance it looks very similar to the Sleep Time app however when you look at settings you get a few extra features not available on the other apps, such as having control over how long the wake up phase is. Both Sleep Time and Sleep Meister have it set at a 30 minute (Sleep Time states this is the opportune time to ensure you can access the light stage of sleep) This could be a positive for someone who wouldn’t like to wake up 29 minutes before they have to. The quality of the graphs on this app are slightly more detailed and it allows you to save and access more of your statistics.

Sleep Cycle also has optional features to measure your heart rate when you wake up, log your mood when you wake up and make notes on your sleep. this is really good if you want to have a more detailed of your sleep pattern.

Sleep Cycle also allows you to add a profile about yourself and access your results online.

So which do I think is best? Out of the two free sleep apps Sleep Time is just slightly ahead for me however even though sleep cycle comes at a cost go £1.49 it is slightly more advanced on how much data you can log. I certainly would recommend using a sleep app because even though I thought I used to sleep well I find waking up in my light sleep so much easier which does make a difference to my day, I really can feel the difference when I don’t use it.

For a blog on how you can get more sleep click here

To find out if you’re getting enough sleep and how sleep can effect weight loss click here