A Comparative Study of Sleep and Mood Between Young Elite Athletes and Age-Matched Controls.

Research paper by Anette A Harris, Hilde H Gundersen, Pia Mørk PM Andreassen, Eirunn E Thun, Bjørn B Bjorvatn, Ståle S Pallesen

Indexed on: 03 Mar '17Published on: 03 Mar '17Published in: Journal of physical activity & health


Sleep and mood have seldom been compared between elite athletes and non-elite athletes, although potential differences suggest that physical activity may affect these parameters. This study aims to explore whether adolescent elite athletes differ from controls in terms of sleep, positive affect (PA) and negative affect (NA).Forty-eight elite athletes and 26 controls participating in organized and non-organized sport completed a questionnaire, and a seven-day sleep diary.On school days, the athletes and the controls who participated in organized and non-organized sport differed in bedtime (22:46, 23:14, 23:42, p<.01), sleep onset (23:03, 23:27, 00:12, p<.01), and total sleep time (7:52, 8:00, 6:50, p<01). During weekend, the athletes, the controls who participated in organized-, and non-organized sport differed in bedtime (23:30, 00:04, 00:49, p<.01), sleep onset (23.42, 00:18, 01:13, p<.01), rise time (9:15, 9:47, 10:55, p<.01), sleep efficiency (95.0%, 94.2%, 90.0%, p<05), and sleep onset latency (11.8, 18.0, 28.0 minutes, p<.01). Furthermore, the athletes reported less social jetlag (0:53) and higher score for PA (34.3) compared with the controls who participated in non-organized sport (jetlag: 1:25, p<.05, PA: 29.8, p<.05).An almost dose-response association was found between weekly training hours, sleep, social jetlag and mood in adolescents.