If there was a pill guaranteed to reduce stress, enhance muscle recovery, reduce our risk of injury, improve performance and naturally increase levels of hormones in our bodies – most of us would take it without hesitation. What we don’t always realise is, we don’t need a magic pill to do all of these things, we just need a good bit of shut-eye.

As athletes, we often overlook sleep in favour of other better known performance enhancers like training and nutrition. The fact is, sleep is the single most important thing we can do for our brain and our bodies each day. It’s even more important for those of us putting our bodies through intense training and competition on the daily.

We know that one of the most sought after benefits of red light therapy is its ability to improve circadian rhythm and increase deep sleep. Anyone that uses our lights will tell you it’s one of the first things they notice. But there is more we can be doing to get those quality zzz’s and it starts with our bed.

We recently discovered a Manchester-based company quite literally changing the sleep game with their patent-pending innovation in foam technology, proven to improve posture and spinal alignment, relieve pressure and calm your proprioceptors to aid restful sleep.

Levitex takes a scientific approach to sleep, focusing on developing pillows, mattresses and toppers specifically for athletes who need quality rest and recovery. They recently signed a partnership with Premiership Rugby club Sale Sharks to supply mattresses and pillows to players and staff. The players carry their Levitex pillows with them during away game trips and we can see why. Other elite athletes that have made Levitex their sleep products of choice include Team GB stars Morgan Lake, Katy Marchant and Ed Clancy, as well as Paralympics GB athletes Rich Whitehead and Tom Hamer.

We met up with CEO and Founder James Leinhardt and discovered a lot of shared values in our approach to business and the manufacturing of our products. I’ve even swapped my old mattress for a Levitex and I love it so much I now look forward to going to bed each night.

In fact, James believes so much in his products he opened them up to scientific scrutiny by approaching the University of Salford to conduct independent clinical trials looking at the impact of Levitex mattresses on comfort during sleep.

The consensus was overwhelming – against 11 other sleeping surfaces including memory foam, sprung mattresses and air-alternating mattresses, Levitex offered the best combination of comfort, support and pressure relief. Of all participants, 100% stated they found them comfortable with the tests showing increased levels of relaxation and effective redistribution of pressure on the joints.

This is important given the impact of sleep , not only on your mood, energy and brain function, but on your propensity for injury. It’s perhaps the one thing athletes do their utmost to avoid, yet it’s not exactly common knowledge that a poor night’s sleep can considerably increase your chance of injury. A decent pillow and mattress is not an indulgence, it’s an investment in your playing career. I wish I had known about Levitex during my playing career – who knows, I could still be in the game!

Go to www.levitex.co.uk to find out more.