Fewer periods of inactivity and/or a greater level of physical activity are both associated with a better quality of sleep in women with fibromyalgia

In February 2019 researchers from Spain, Northern Ireland and The Netherlands published the results of their study to assess the effect of inactivity and physical activity on sleep quality in fibromyalgia. A total of 409 women, aged 30-65 years, from southern Spain who had fibromyalgia were included in the study. Information on the level of inactivity, physical activity intensity levels (light, moderate, and moderate-vigorous), and total amount of physical activity were measured for 7 consecutive days using an accelerometer, an instrument for measuring the acceleration of a moving body. Information on sleep quality was collected via a self-reported questionnaire. Results showed that greater periods of inactivity were associated with worsening sleep quality, sleep duration, sleep disturbances and daytime functioning. In contrast, all physical activity levels were associated with better sleep quality, falling asleep more quickly, less sleep medication and better daytime functioning. It was also noted that a light amount of exercise as well as a greater amount of physical activity were both associated with better sleep efficiency (total sleep time in a night compared to the total amount of time spent in bed) and fewer sleep disturbances.

Borges-Cosic M et al. Sedentary time, physical activity, and sleep quality in fibromyalgia: The al-√Āndalus project. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2019 Feb;29(2):266-274

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