It is well documented that many adolescents are not meeting current sleep duration recommendations, with a growing body of literature suggesting adolescent athletes also fall into this category. What is less known is the relationship between current and ideal sleep behaviors. We sought to quantify sleep behaviors in a group of athletes and to understand how their current behaviors compare to their self-reported ideal behaviors. One hundred ninety six competitive, male and female athletes (15.7 ± 1.3 y) completed the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and a questionnaire that captured usual sleep habits. The PSQI was analyzed for habitual bedtime, wake time, sleep duration, and sleep quality. The usual sleep habits questionnaire was analyzed for ideal bedtime, wake time, and calculated sleep duration. Reported mean sleep duration was 7:45 ± 1:06 h:min. Actual bedtime was later (+0:44 ± 0:05 h:min, p<0.001) than ideal bedtime, actual wake time was earlier (-0:50 ± 0:08 h:min, p<0.001) than ideal wake time, and actual sleep duration was less (-2:11 ± 1:27 h:min, p<0.001) than ideal sleep duration. Adolescent athletes are not meeting current sleep duration recommendations and there are significant discrepancies between self-reported current and ideal sleep behaviors in this group.
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Sleep Sci (2020) 13:18-24.