Two thirds of people feel they need more rest
Over two thirds of the public would like more rest, a new study reveals.
The Rest Test, led by researchers from Durham University, is claimed to be the world’s largest ever survey on the topic
Involving more than 18,000 people from 134 different countries, researchers investigated participants’ resting habits and attitudes towards relaxation.
The results showed that 68 per cent of people wanted more rest, while those who said they did not feel in need of more had wellbeing scores twice as high as those who did.
Principal investigator Dr Felicity Callard says the survey findings show that people’s ability to take rest and their levels of general wellbeing are related.
“We’re delighted that these findings combat a common, moralising connection between rest and laziness,” she said in a statement.
Respondents were also asked to choose the activities they found to be the most restful.
Reading came in at the top position, followed by being in the natural environment, being on their own, listening to music and doing nothing in particular.
“It’s intriguing that the top activities considered restful are frequently done on one’s own. Perhaps it’s not only the total hours resting or working that we need to consider, but the rhythms of our work, rest and time with and without others,” explained Dr Callard.
Further, the survey also asked respondents to state how many hours rest they had within the last 24 hours.
The results showed that, on average, being younger and having a higher household income was associated with having fewer hours of rest. While those with caring responsibilities or in shift work which included nights also reported fewer hours of rest.
The average time spent resting by U.K. respondents was three hours and eight minutes.
The Rest Test is part of a wider collaboration between BBC Radio 4 and Hubbub, a collective of social scientists, artists, humanities researchers, broadcasters and mental health experts.