Night Shift Workers

Everyone needs to exercise, but for some people it’s more important than others. Night shift workers face additional health risks due to their disrupted sleep patterns, but research suggests they can also experience even more benefits if they manage to fit regular exercise into their schedule (

Night shifts aren’t easy for many reasons. First, you have to be at peak performance while everyone else is asleep. For most people, waking up as it gets dark isn’t natural, and neither is staying in bed throughout the day while everyone else is busy going about their lives. They end up fatigued and unhappy. There are other problems, too. It can make it much harder to eat a balanced diet or to exercise with any kind of routine.

People who work night shifts tend to have poorer cardiovascular health than average and are at increased risk of metabolic disorders. Now, we know that exercise is generally good for the cardiovascular system and for your metabolism, but researchers wanted to see how it would specifically impact people working night shifts.

They divided their participants into two groups, exercisers and non-exercisers, and they monitored them over several weeks. Criteria for assessment included both job performance and personal health. Both categories were improved in the group that was exercising more.

From the job performance perspective, the exercisers were more alert than the sedentary group. Their cognitive functioning was better, which is clearly advantageous when trying to work outside normal hours. It doesn’t just mean increased productivity but also increased safety in the workplace.

As for their individual wellbeing, the active group experienced less inflammation, which is often one of the most significant markers of deteriorating health. Their metabolic health improved, reducing the previously high risk they would develop a metabolic disorder. The extra exercise was helping them achieve more regular and higher-quality sleep.

Night shift workers could see impressive gains from exercising more frequently, but that doesn’t remove the challenges to establishing a regular exercise pattern. Workers still need to find the time, probably just before or after their shift, for both aerobic exercise and strength training. That means walking or cycling, plus some weights.

There are still difficulties to overcome, but if night shift workers can figure out how to make exercise more of a priority, they won’t be the only ones to see the benefits.

Related Posts

Choose Your Ring

You may have noticed that smart rings are a device of the moment, trying to push their way ahead of watches and wristbands. Of course, the increased popularity means increased choice. How can you decide which is the one for you Some of the biggest names in smart rings include the Oura Ring, the Ultrahuman

Read More »

Keeping Count

Some people have a very relaxed attitude toward their exercise routine. Others ruthlessly count every second and step to track every miniscule improvement or decline. Both approaches have their benefits, but there is some research to suggest that monitoring your performance may provide you with quite a boost ( Step counting is easier than ever

Read More »

Garmin Forerunner 165

Running is one of the most popular forms of exercise out there, and it’s pretty easy to try it for yourself. All you really need is a decent pair of shoes. If you’re really serious, there’s advice and all kinds of other aids available. The Garmin Forerunner 165 is one of the latest and most

Read More »
Scroll to Top