Monday, May 13, 2019

How to Choose the Best Foam Sleeping Pad

If you have the notion that camping is all stress and discomfort, I am glad to tell you that you are wrong. This is because even though you are not in your room sleeping on your soft, big mattress, you can still achieve a certain degree of comfort by purchasing and using the right materials and equipment.

One of those materials that can help minimize the discomfort you are subdued to especially where sleep is concerned is a sleeping pad. This material, when used together with your sleeping bag helps you attain a higher level of comfort and insulation than you normally would. This translates to a better and more comfortable night spent under the stars.

Why you need a very good sleeping bed?

The quality of sleep you get at any given time is directly proportional to the quality of your sleeping pad and as well know, getting good and quality sleep will positively impact us thereby enabling us to be more productive and to go through the day with more cheer than we would if we did not get good sleep. This is why it is important that you get the best sleeping bag possible so that you can be as productive as possible and get as much rest as you can.
If you are somebody who would like to get a good night’s rest in the open, it is imperative that you invest in a sleeping pad. This helps you maintain your comfort and keep your peace of mind. Apart from the fact that a sleeping pad greatly enhances your comfort, its provision of insulation is also a great plus. This is because more insulation against the cold that naturally comes with sleeping out in the open means more safety health wise. This is because exposure to cold can result in health complications such as frostbite and hypothermia.

How a sleeping pad works
There are two different types of sleeping pads all with the same purpose which is comfort and insulation. There are the inflatable types (manual inflatable sleeping pads and self-inflating sleeping pads) and the closed cell foam which are not inflatable. These pads all work to reduce the amount of heat in form of cold that enters gets to the person using them. They are made from lightweight materials which allow them to be easily moved. These pads do not generate any heat of their own but instead provide insulation for the user.
Factors to consider when choosing the best sleeping pads
The materials used: the effectiveness of a sleeping pad both in the provision of comfort and as an insulating material depends a lot on the type of material used in the manufacturing and on how thick it is. How thick a sleeping pad will influence how comfortable the pad is. This means that campers who do not mind how heavy or bulky a sleeping pad is and who prefer to place their comfort over the ease of packing, a thick sleeping pad will be just perfect.
The weight of the sleeping pad: the weight of a sleeping pad is yet another thing that must be considered in choosing the best sleeping pad. This is best determined by the purpose for which the sleeping pad will be used, however.
For instance, if what you intend to do with the pad is backpacking, you will be best served by purchasing an ultralight pad although these are usually more expensive than the average sleeping pad. Another option to consider if you are trying to get a pad that is not weighty are those that have tapered shapes; this is because they minimize the volume required for packing which enables them to inhabit a smaller space. Another option for lightweight sleeping pads is a closed-cell foam pad which is usually short in length and is usually also quite reduced in weight.
If you are going on a car camping, however, you will do very well to choose a thick, large pad for sleeping as these greatly enhances comfort. This is asides the fact that they are also quite inexpensive when compared to their ultralight counterparts. Consider getting an inflatable air mattress or a self-inflating pad.
Insulation: one very major thing to consider when getting the best sleeping pad is how much insulation it provides. This is because the body loses heat to the ground while sleeping and a properly insulated sleeping pad minimizes the chances of this happening. In fact, many sleeping pad manufacturers make use of synthetic insulation to enhance the amount of insulation achievable by these pads.
One way to know how much insulation a pad provides is to check its R-value. This is a measurement of its ability and capacity to resist heat loss and the higher it is for a pad, the higher the degree of insulation you can expect to get from that sleeping pad. Depending on the weather conditions of the time and the environment within which you intend to use the sleeping pad, there are options available from 1.0 (minimally insulated) to 11.0 (well insulated).
For the average summer camping, a sleeping pad with an R-value of 3.0 is good while you will need to go higher for a winter sleeping camp. You should note though that sleeping pads differ from sleeping bags in that choosing a high warmth rating will not lead to an overheating of the pad. While this can be reasonably expected to happen in a sleeping bag, it is not the same in a sleeping pad.
The surface of the sleeping pad: the kind of texture of the sleeping pad matters in how much comfort you will derive from the pad. If you are the restless type of sleeper, you should look at getting a pad with a textured or brushed fabric surface. This will help reduce the possibility of you sliding off the sleeping bag in the middle of the night thereby disturbing your sleep and disrupting your pattern. Another factor that might make you want to choose a textured surface pad is the fact that it is quieter when compared to other surfaces.
The width of the sleeping pad: most pads have a standard width of about 20 inches. So, if you are an average sized person who doesn’t require much space than that, you are good to go. If on the other hand, you are a large person, you should look at getting a pad with a width of between 25 – 30 inches. Usually, the length and width of a pad are directly proportional but then, there are cases where they differ, so, to ensure your comfort, choose a width that will provide you with the most comfort.
The length of the sleeping pad: an optimum sleeping pad should at the very least accommodate your shoulders and your feet as these are vital places for insulation. A regular length pad is usually about 72 inches; a long sleeping pad falls around 78 inches while a short pad will be around the range of 47-48 inches. Ensure that you get a pad that fits with your body length and at the very least provides insulation for the aforementioned areas.

The 5 Best Sleeping Pads to Consider
Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol Ultralight Foam Backpacking Mattress
Weight: ultralight; Design: accordion style; Type: closed-cell foam; Size: regular, small; R-value: 2.6
Zero Mile Mark Compact Foam Camping Mat
Weight: lightweight; R-value: 2.0; Size: regular; Design: compact
Therm-a-Rest RidgeRest Solar Reflective Foam Camping Pad
Weight: ultralight; Design: RidgeRest; Size: regular; Type: closed-cell; R-value: 3.5; Thickness: 2cm
Outdoor Hiking Mountaineering Foam Camping Mat Sleeping Pad
Weight: ultralight; Design: accordion; Size: small
ALPS Mountaineering Foldable Foam Mat
Weight: lightweight; Design: accordion; Type: closed-cell foam; Size: small
Some Frequently Asked Questions
Do sleeping pads go inside sleeping bags?
Yes, as already explained, sleeping pads provide you with more comfort and insulation.
Are sleeping pads necessary?
Quite so. This is because they provide insulation and comfort which are very essential in order to have a fun camping experience free of health complications.
Is it warmer to sleep with clothes on or off?
Yes, it is. Try not to overdress though as this may lead to overheating. One or two layers of cloths is good. Ensure they are fresh and dry.

What is a good R-value for a sleeping pad?
The R-value of the sleeping pad you get will be dependent on the purpose for which you want to use the sleeping pad as already mentioned. For warm weather camping trips, a good R-value is

 2. What is a closed-cell foam sleeping pad?
A closed-cell foam sleeping pad is a sleeping pad made from dense foam that has a lot of little closed air cells. This type of sleeping pads is usually lightweight and inexpensive. This is in addition to being durable and providing optimum insulation.

No comments:

Post a Comment