Despite the potential damage that a lack of sleep can do to one’s health, most students in Singapore have, unfortunately, pulled at least one all-nighter at some point in their lives. So how can we turn this into a slightly healthier experience for both the mind and the body?
The answer lies, naturally, in exercise. Taking quick workout breaks while studying late into the night could be an effective way of rejuvenating yourself and increasing study efficiency.
Stretching helps to ease tension in the muscles. As your body relaxes, you’ll find that your mind gets clearer too, allowing you to better prepare yourself for the next hour of intense studying.
You may choose to do this while standing or sitting. Keeping your upper body straight, clasp both your hands behind your neck. Move your head back slowly, allowing your chest to move slightly forward as you do so. Tilt till you feel a comfortable stretch in your spine.
Begin in a standing position, with your feet slightly apart. Raise your hands, keeping your head upright, but not tilted back. Ensuring that your shoulders do not move up along with your arms, reach as high as you can go, pulling your body upwards till you feel a stretch in your back.
Balance exercises are an effective means of sharpening your focus. Fix your gaze on an object or spot in front of you in order to keep your balance, and you’ll be able to hone your concentration skills.
Standing on one foot
Stand with your feet slightly apart and your arms outstretched at your sides for balance. Lift a foot and hold it for as long as you can without wobbling, then relax and repeat the exercise using your other foot.
As with the above exercise, stand in a preparatory position with your feet slightly apart and your arms extended for balance. Keeping your right leg straight, stretch it out in front of you, as high as you can go. Repeat this routine, bringing your leg to your side and back as well. Switch to using your other leg when you’ve finished, and follow the same steps.
There’s nothing quite as refreshing as breaking a good sweat, especially after a monotonous night stuck with the books. An aerobic workout improves blood flow to the brain and increases your body’s production of adrenaline, helping you to focus and absorb information better.
Using a skipping rope, skip twenty times to get your energy levels up. If you don’t own a rope, jumping jacks would also suffice as an effective activity.
Put on your favourite tunes and party it up in your room for a few minutes! It’s a great way to let off some steam as well – just make sure not to wake your family and neighbours up.