Sleeping inside a hammock under the stars and open-air is what dreams are made of until you wake up with a stiff neck and painful knees. This is caused by the most common hammock set-up mistakes which can easily be avoided to get a snuggle comfortably inside the hammock and get a good sleep. Below are the top 6 sleeping secrets shared by frequent campers that’ll make you say goodbye to a sore back and help you sleep comfortably in a hammock.
1. Get The Right Hammock
First and foremost, make sure the hammock can support your height and weight. Hammocks come in different sizes if you’re tall, getting a long hammock ensures your body enough room. Regardless, choose a hammock that’s 11 feet long hammock for optimum comfort while not being bulky to carry.
Second thing, avoid hammocks of rope or wood as they’re uncomfortable to lay on and cause rope burns. Hammock material should be durable, comfortable to lie on while being camping-friendly, preferably nylon hammocks are the best for camping.
2. Hang The Hammock Accurately
Choose sturdy trees that are 12 to 15 feet apart to hang the hammock. Then use a rope, suitable knots for hammocks, and a carabiner to secure the hammock in place. There should be at least a 30-45-degree angle between the hammock line and the tree to ensure the hammock is accurately hanged.
Also, don’t suspend the hammock in a straight line, it should be loose in the middle. Use a ridgeline between the ends of a hammock to get the perfect sag that ensures comfortable lying and sitting positions.
3. Use A Bug Net
The biggest nuisance when sleeping in the open air is being attacked by mosquitoes, insects and other pests. You’re in the wild, among trees full of mosquitoes, ants and bugs of various sorts that will make sure you don’t get to sleep with ease. You can use any kind of bug repellent, but the only fool proof method of avoiding being stung by bugs is by installing a bug net around your hammock. A bug net will not only keep you protected from annoying bugs but will also keep leaves, dirt and other things from falling inside your hammock.
4. Lie At An Angle
It has been proven that lying at an angle or diagonally on a hammock gives you the utmost comfort without straining your neck, back and shoulders. If you happen to lie straight on the hammock, your body will be positioned like a banana because of the sag in the middle and this position despite being uncomfortable will lead to bad cramping of your limbs. So, sleep slightly off centre on the hammock to ensure your weight is well balanced on the hammock that gives you a relaxed sleep.
5. Create A Base
Who said you can’t make a bed out of your hammock? Take a blanket or a sleeping bag/mat and line it over the hammock surface to get that extra warmth on cold nights. Also, you can throw in some pillows to rest your head on, a travel pillow or a neck pillow is most suited for sleeping in the hammock as it gives you a soft head supporting surface without straining your neck. Also, don’t forget to use an under quilt as it protects you from getting too cold in winters.
6. Try Using Pillow
One of the major problems when sleeping in a hammock is, you hyperextend your legs or knees, which may lead to painful knees the next morning. To avoid having stiff leg muscles, keep a pillow or a rolled-up blanket under your knees, this ensures slightly elevated knee joints so you don’t exert pressure on them by extending them all out. Moreover, you can use a small pillow or a rolled-up blanket below your back to protect it if you have lower back issues.