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The Anatomy of a Nap 5 November 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 12:23 am

There are many different kinds of naps, and every IB student needs to know about them.

In-class nap. This is the most common type of nap for IB students. It occurs at school during a boring class. In-class naps can be detrimental if you miss something important or if the teacher begins to dislike you because of your frequent napping. However, it is a great idea to nap in an easy class so you won’t get sleepy later during a strict boring class. I often sleep in Chemistry or AP Biology so I will be wide-awake for AP European History.

Cat nap. These occur at other times during the day when a short nap is needed. For instance, in the car to or from school. Cat naps are also popular when one first gets home from school. They can provide a nice refresher so you can work into the night.

All-nighter nap. This type of nap is common in people who often pull all-nighters. If this applies to you, you have may notice that you often need a refreshing, short nap. For instance, if you are getting so tired that your brain is not functioning, but you have a lot of work you need to get done, you can usually afford a slight, ten-minute nap. It will probably end up boosting your productivity as you become less of a zombie. I had to do this when I was working on my History Fair project the night before it was due. It can be really helpful.

Epic nap. These are variants of the “cat nap” that get out of hand. An epic nap occurs when you sleep for a period of two hours or more (often before you have begun your homework) and also can sometimes occur when someone forgets to wake you up and you jerk into conciousness hours afterward.

Crash nap. This is the kind of nap you are forced to take because you had too much energy drink and crashed. These can often turn into epic naps, and usually are. To avoid this type of nap, do not consume large amounts of energy-boosting drink. You will come to regret it.

Almost nap. These can occur anywhere. They often involve a slowing of activity and blank staring into space. Often accompanied by wandering thoughts, one usually snaps out of an almost nap after remembering how much homework one has left to do. While technically not a nap, they can sometimes result in a feeling of refreshment.

Should-have-been-a-nap-but-turned-into-12-hours-of-unperturbed-sleep nap. This was a suggestion from the bffaeaeae. This set of naps is actually a subset of epic naps. Whereas epic naps are catnaps out of control, these are epic naps out of control. These are often caused by parents who feel bad and later say, “Well, you are always up so late and you just looked so cute and calm that I left you there. You didn’t have too much homework left, did you?” Of course, one can never answer “yes” to that, so sometimes parents may even do it frequently. The best prevention is to set an alarm that you know will wake you up, and to make sure that your alarm is not set for more than an hour ahead. Once you get into deeper sleep, it becomes harder to wake up.

Microsleep (technical term!). This is “a nap where you like literally fall asleep for one to two seconds and wake up again”. Thanks, Cuong! :)


10 Responses to “The Anatomy of a Nap”

  1. A Says:

    omg! love the last type. I think that pretty much summarizes how we get the majority of our sleep. Problem with all-nighter nap is that they tend to become an epic nap after a while. :(

  2. Priya Says:

    I think I have done all these naps. Is that something to be proud of or ashamed of? *confused*

    Let’s go through the list: the in-class (what’s depressing is that the only time I can actually remember nodding off was in Jones after that one quiz. Yikes!), cat nap (my daily routine on the way to school), epic nap (doesn’t occur often, but a good example was last night for me), crash nap (happened to me once when I got a shot of espresso in my coffee and made the mistake of slurping it up all at once. Hey, not my fault! It was good!), almost nap (pretty much describes my existence in IB), and the should-have-been-a-nap-but-turned-into-12-hours-of-unperturbed-sleep nap (History Fair last year. Dad was supposed to wake us up; never did. Hence me getting to school realllly late and Ramma having a panic attack).

  3. Priya Says:

    Oh wait! I haven’t done the all-nighter nap. Doesn’t work for me.

  4. Aly Says:

    Hah. I do in-class ones all. the. time. Let us see . . . I have slept in French, Pre-Calculus, Chemistry, AP Biology, and AP European History (during that Ba-rock Period video). I cannot sleep in AP Human Geography (too loud) and AP English because . . . well, I couldn’t do that to Ms. H. :)

    As for the crash nap, I have not had one, but they are described to me a lot, so I figured they were pretty common.

  5. Cuong Says:

    Haha. This is pretty much genius, Helie. :) Very entertaining to read. But have you ever had a nap where you like literally fall asleep for one to two seconds and wake up again? Happens to me allll the time in AP Chemistry. It’s not an almost nap because you actually fall asleep… but it’s like for one to two seconds. I actually think these have a technical term-microsleep or something.

    Oh! I just found it on Wiki! :P

  6. Aly Says:

    Nice. That actually happened to me one time when I was taking a bath. It also happens a lot when I am trying to read something really boring really late at night. I will add that on the post. :)

  7. Priya Says:

    When I’m trying to read Biology or History for a huge test the next day, that always happens to me. But when it does, I usually eventually nod off for like so long that I convince myself I’m not going to get any work done and go get three or four hours of sleep before getting up at like two or three to finish everything.

  8. […] reference is in order here. Seriously, 3 AM is actually normal for me. I make it up by taking an epic nap after Jeopardy! (but before homework begins). It kind of works out, I guess, but my parents do not […]

  9. Holly Says:


  10. Holly Says:

    There’s also the forced nap, for people who have parents like mine who will MAKE you go to bed or threaten you with harsh punishment until you do.

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