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I Can’t Get No Sleep🎶: How Quality Sleep & Grounding Techniques Transform Your Festival Experience

Yoga teacher and self-care advocate - The Festival Yogi - reveals the secrets of finding your rhythm, explains the dangers of neglecting your needs and shares top tips to keep you tip-top ‘o the morning.


“On my way to a 4-day bender with no sleep- I think it's doable!”... said no one ever!

It happened again...


… you rocked up to your fave weekend festival with the mindset of it being “more of a chilled one this year”. You had good intentions of actually sleeping - “at least by 3am when shit gets weird & sketchy!” You wanted to fully immerse yourself, and live the weekend you envisioned… AKA the dreamiest shizzle of the highest order!

legs coming out of the bottom of a tent at a wet festival

Alas, you find yourself staring at the tent ceiling as your overstimulated mind (or - if not yours, someone else being vocal about theirs!) keeps you awake. Just as you drift, the tent neighbours decide to have a party of their own… Next thing you know, the birds are up with their damning morning song and the sun rises to burn a hole through your tent… you know you’ve effed it! There’s no chance of any sleep now.


Let’s face it! We’re all guilty of getting too caught up in that inescapable buzz of living collectively at festivals to care about sleeping, but it’s those sleep-deprived nights that really have us tripping.


So, let's dig into why sleep is so important and why looking after yourself at festivals should your top priority.


 

Why is quality sleep so important?


Sleep deprivation means you’re not getting enough sleep. Most adults need 7 to 8 hours each night to maintain good health. When you get less sleep than that, as many people do at festivals in particular, it can lead to many health problems:

Early sleep deprivation symptoms

  • Drowsiness

  • Inability to concentrate

  • Memory problems

  • Less physical strength

  • Less ability to fight off infections

Sleep deprivation problems over time

In short, sleep deprivation feels like zero brain functionality. Even looking after your own basic needs, like sourcing food and water, becomes a hard task. Wandering the fields looking like a spaced-out zombie, feeling even worse… hardly the father of the vibe! I’ve seen people leaving festivals early ‘cos of burnout: feeling like crap and full of regret that they didn't fulfil the expectations of their magical trip to the fields.


You're not alone!


This summer I taught yoga at six weekend-long festivals across the UK. On a mission to encourage festival-goers not to put their well-being on pause while they party, I discussed the impact of sleep (or lack thereof) with like-minded folk, just like you. Through these connections, I discovered that most were suffering from insomnia at festivals.

music festival yoga class glastonbury festival yogi

but surely there’s another, better way?

We all know the hardest thing about yoga at festivals is actually getting there! Being able to crawl out of your tent in your pyjamas, like the creatures we are, and roll right into a healing practice is the revival we need. Essentially, this is why I teamed up with MyCauseUK to bring yoga into crew campsites at Noisily and Shambala this season - the overall aim of bringing healing to straight to their tent-doors. I hope to collaborate with even more festivals in 2024; I want to change the well-being issue of those festival mornings by offering yoga right there in the campsites.


How private campsites can help with quality sleep


I’m not usually one for glamping, but somewhere with the magnitude of Glastonbury, I'd recommend booking somewhere like Inner Sanctum to maximise your experience. Just like how I was bringing yoga straight to crew camping, Inner Sanctum offers yoga right there in your private campsite.

A beuaitful blue sky day at inner sanctum private campsite, glastonbury festival

There are loads of advantages of private campsites at any festival - not least the peace and quiet - but camping at Glastonbury is a whole different game. Here are my top reasons why you should consider booking one for Glastonbury in particular:


  1. The busiest arrival time for general camping at Glastonbury is 4am Wednesday. The thought of starting a 5-day festival on a sleep-deprived night alone gives me anxiety, so easy arrival to a private campsite is a winner!

  2. I love a rebirthing shower to wake up, but Glastonbury general camping facilities are unable to offer large enough numbers of public showers - so if you value your sanitary sanity, you may find it challenging. (You pretty much have to be part of the furniture to get your hands on a Glastonbury Campervan Pass to access those facilities.) Private campsites offer no queue posh showers for their residents.

  3. You could be camped literally miles from the Healing Fields; not about a long walk when you’re not feeling 100%. Having a wealth of healing facilities on your doorstep is such a blessing.

  4. With the festival tickets in such high demand, there’s no guarantee you’ll get them (I’m yet to be successful!) and leaving what could be your one and only Glastonbury experience with regrets would be a right flop!

But HOW to sleep amongst the excitement?


Discipline = freedom when it comes to establishing a sleep routine at festivals, it feels like a pointless effort… but trust me it can be done and it’s well worth it. Folks working at festivals are testimony to that - they have to get those Zs in…BUT HOW you ask?


Whatever you do, actively ensure that the first thing you do in the morning is for you. Your nervous system is often overstimulated at festivals, so it’s essential you write recalibration into your routine. Get that dopamine dose by giving yourself a moment before the madness to reset.


Grounding techniques for festivals:

  • Check-in with yourself: engage with daily yoga classes to reset your nervous system & release muscle tentsion that may prevent decent sleep.

  • Connect with the land: meditate in a memorable place of the festival.

  • Take your time: a savasana nap outside in the breeze does wonders. It’s simple: lie on your back, fully relaxed with your arms and legs extended, palms facing up by your side, and close your eyes - bliss!

  • Go barefoot to neutralise your energy


Festival sleep tips:

  • Brumari is a breathing technique for insomnia which re-organises the micro-organisms in the body back to their natural state and silences the mind with the humming frequency:

    • Inhale fully through nose, blocking your ears with your thumbs, fingers rest on top of head, with your eyes and mouth closed.

    • hum loudly on your exhale like a bumble bee ‘til the end of your breath.

    • Repeat x 5-7.

  • Rub a drop of lavender essential oil into the soles of your feet for a deep sleep

  • Backbends are great for morning hangover anxiety as they open the heart space allowing you to relax.

festival yogi instagram page

I hope you'll carry this knowledge through your festival season next year - it's truly transformed my festival experience.


For more wellbeing tips at festivals just like this follow the Festival Yogi Vibe Tribe or follow me on Instagram:


See you in the fields ✌️



 

Thank you Lucy aka the Festival Yogi for your excellent insight on the joy of slumber-fuelled festivals.

We invite you all to come and enjoy Glastonbury Festival from the comfort of Inner Sanctum, Pilton. We are offering Early Bird rates until 2nd November - pop a deposit down now and lock them in! If you're not successful in the Glastonbury Ticket Sales, we'll give you a refund.


We'll leave you with an image of Inner Sanctum owner, Ben and son Fox enjoying the comfort of a Tipi...

a father an son enjoying good sleep at glastonbury festival



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