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Bumps in your night?

March 10, 2020 - Are you getting to sleep as fast as you’d like, staying asleep as soundly as you’d like and waking up feeling fantastic? If you’re shaking your head to any one of these, Andy Barge explains what our Sleep program can do for you.

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For Andy Barge, wellness director at Six Senses Zighy Bay, any program starts by tuning in to what a guest needs.

“We start by asking whether you’re happy with how you look, feel or perform. If not, there may be an underlying reason and we can help nudge you in the right direction. The same goes for sleep. Among the huge range of symptoms related to lack of sleep, you may find it hard to fall asleep or sleep through the night, or you may wake up feeling groggy and unrefreshed. In the long term, sleep deprivation affects other areas of your life such as mood swings, weight gain and health problems. That’s why, even during the limited time you’re with us, we do what we can to get you back on the right path.”

Any stresses and strains affecting sleep will show up on your Wellness Screening. This takes around 45 minutes and is a non-invasive way of finding out what’s going on inside you “under the hood”. A common marker among busy guests is an overactive sympathetic nervous system, which is often referred to as the fight-or-flight response. Handy for cavemen running from tigers, not so great if it doesn’t switch off in our high-alert and always-on lifestyles.

“During your consultation, our sleep ambassador Dr. Peeyush will look at the results of your Wellness Screening and dig a little bit into your general sleep patterns to find out what you want to change the most. He will then build an individual protocol to improve your sleep. This is not just a few sleep tips, but rather an in-depth review.”

Guests at Six Senses Zighy Bay can opt for a three, five or seven-day Sleep program. All programs include a personalized holistic massage with essential oils, meditation, yoga nidra or pranayama, nutrition advice and personal supplements to support sleep.

“It depends on your availability but treatments are usually carried out in the evening to relax your body and unwind your mind. We arrange a time to come to your villa and set up the sleep tracker, a Kindle-sized device that sits unobtrusively by the side of your bed and measures your breathing as you go into the different stages of sleep. All you need to do to activate it is to press a button. We also set up the villa with specific linens and amenities to promote better sleep.”

The results from the tracker are analyzed during a 10-minute review each morning. This session also pinpoints any changes that may need to be made for the following night.

“There are lots of things we can do to overcome issues such as sinus blockages and breathing troubles, foods to favor or avoid, or additional therapies. A favorite is Shirodhara, a form of Ayurvedic treatment with essential oils to soothe anxiety and improve sleep quality.”

Available for all guests and extra handy for regular travelers, Six Senses also offers a jet lag app from Timeshifter. Jet lag is caused when the sleep-wake and light-dark cycle shift too quickly for the 24-hour circadian clock in the brain to adapt. Using a handy mobile app, you can follow a detailed plan to improve your experience whether you are heading away on business or pleasure.

“The plan is based on your sleep pattern, flight plan, and making some adjustments a few days before you travel to start shifting your circadian rhythm through your exposure to light, caffeine and sleep. It was designed for NASA astronauts and the principles are great, especially if you travel regularly across time zones for work.”

At the end of the Sleep program, the Wellness Screening is repeated, and the results form the framework for recommendations you can take home.

“It’s about data and feedback. Even the three-day program can point you in the right direction. Having been on it myself I can identify what I’ve done that’s causing a problem. For me, triggers include staring at my phone in the hour before I sleep – it gets me every time!”

After graduating with an Exercise Science degree, Andy worked as a personal trainer around the UK before managing a series of spas in Brighton, Sicily and the Maldives. Following a five-year stint as Executive Director of Leisure and Spa for Marriot Hotels in Jordan, Andy joined Six Senses Zighy Bay in March 2019. We wish him a very happy 1st anniversary!

Find out more about where our Sleep program is available to make a reservation inquiry.

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