How much should teen athletes sleep?
Well this is a question which doesn’t have 1 exact answer, as different people have different genes. You may have heard of people who are ‘short sleepers’ who have a gene called DEC2. But it is very rare. So the chances are that you don’t have it.
As you can see, the average teenager needs 9 to 10 hours of sleep. But athletes obviously don’t belong in the ‘average teen’ section. My research shows that athletes need 10 to 12 hours of sleep per night. Just as athletes need more calories than most people when they’re in training, they need more sleep too. You’re pushing your body in practice, so you need more time to recover.
”Athletes in training should sleep about an hour extra. You can go to sleep earlier, or take an afternoon nap”- Jim Thornton, President of the National Athletic Trainers Association.
Plus, according to an abstract presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics conference last fall, adolescent athletes who slept eight or more hours each night were 68 percent less likely to be injured than athletes who regularly slept less.
The bottom line here is that if you are a teen athlete, you need at least an extra hour of sleep than the average person. That would be 10-12 hours, but as I said everybody is different.