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Torso length pads
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Daniel Goldenberg
(DanG) - M
Torso length pads on 06/16/2005 16:46:16 MDT Print View

Is anyone that is a stomach sleeper using a torso length pad? I've been experimenting by triming a closed cell foam pad. When on your back not much of your legs make contact with the ground but on your stomach your thighs, knees, etc make contact requiring much more stuff (pack, clothing etc) to be placed under your feet/legs. I'd be interested in hearing about people who are stomach sleepers and their experience with shorter pads.


David Spellman
(dspellman) - F
Torso Pad on 06/16/2005 17:55:06 MDT Print View

I take both the Torso Pad (folded up in my pad pocket) and another pad of about 1/8" thickness by about 60" by 20", leastways if the weather is moderate. This thin pad will roll up very small (or line your pack with almost no lost volume) and is very light and provides a surprising amount of insulation. With the 60" of this pad plus the 30" of the torso pad, I have plenty of length...I usually find that it's my thighs that are touching down (around my knees), but that I usually don't have to worry about much below that (thanks to the footbox on my sleeping quilt).

Stomach sleepers have another problem, by the way, which is, "Where do your arms go?" Even on a standard length pad, I frequently find my arms (or at the very least my elbows) hanging off the pad. With a torso pad, I end up using my pack (laid sideways) up around the head end...

One benefit of stomach sleeping? It turns out that stomach sleepers have lower blood pressure during the night than back sleepers.

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
Re: Torso Pad on 06/17/2005 00:22:50 MDT Print View

find this thread interesting, esp. since i'm not a stomach sleeper. always like to learn something new.

two comments:
1) Daniel, Gossamer Gear has both 1/8" & 3/8" thick foam padding. look at their ThinLight product (FYI - the drop-down list selects which product you are ordering).

they also have a NightLight, "egg-crate" cut, foam pad, but this might be overkill except in the very cold. the sectioned torso-length NightLight is my primary pad. i find it quite warm for down to freezing. would work a bit lower, i believe, but i can't personally testify to it. i had an email fr/GG that GVP uses the NightLight at 25deg on top of the snow w/only his bag & no other shelter. i forget what the email specified as to his clothing, but it seemed, to the best of my recollection, that it was a typical winter UL 3-layer system - nothing too exotic.

2) David - due to my slight medical background, i find comments like yours (viz. lower BP for stomach sleepers) very interesting. can you please direct me to a source so that i could read more? would seem to me that the BP's would be quite low in either case cp. to let's say when one is strongly exerting oneself (systolic can really spike, like up to 170 during a lift - when i was much younger & training for power lifting competition), & even a bit lower than one's normal waking BP while sitting. i've never read/learned anything about BP while sleeping, so i would appreciate any further info/direction you can provide.

many thanks,

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: Torso Pad on 06/18/2005 20:50:10 MDT Print View

David's info relates to this.

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
sleep position & BP on 06/19/2005 00:56:55 MDT Print View

thank you. very interesting.

right now, trying to figure out why this would be so. what's repositioning/being-less-constricted & allowing blood to flow more freely, resulting in a drop in BP?

also, BP's mentioned in second article seem a bit on the high side (pre-hypertension zone). Wonder if a similar effect would be seen on individuals with normal/below-normal BP? perhaps, but resulting in smaller drops???

Edited by pj on 06/19/2005 01:08:25 MDT.

Mike Storesund
(mikes) - F
BP lower on side on 06/20/2005 11:23:59 MDT Print View

There must be something to this. I recently completed my CPR re-certification. They have you roll the revived individual onto their right side with the left leg bent to keep them in that position. Of course you continue to monitor the condition, but it must have some additional measure in recovering.

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
Re: BP lower on side on 06/20/2005 12:59:58 MDT Print View


can't remember being taught to do that after all resuscitations.

if they didn't tell you WHY to do this, i could venture a somewhat educated guess (however, haven't had any med. training since the 70's in the military).

turn a person on their side if you don't want the person to aspirate any fluids. definitely if someone is resuscitated after being pulled from the water, you would do this. a person is far more likely to aspirate fluids if they are on their back.

ok. enough guessing on my part.

did they tell you why you should do this? also, only on the right side? (ret. blood supply happens to be on that side)

Edited by pj on 06/20/2005 13:02:45 MDT.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: BP lower on side on 06/20/2005 13:39:59 MDT Print View

I am pretty sure it is for airway reasons.

The lowered blood pressure on the stomach is interesting. But, they would have to show the BP going back up when changing to the supine position for it to be truely due to sleep position.

Also, I would like to know how melatonin and BP relate to sleep stage.

Mike Storesund
(mikes) - F
Re: Re: BP lower on side on 06/20/2005 14:32:15 MDT Print View

When I taught CPR in the military back in the 70's that was not part of the process either, but they also used the precordial thump back then. I also remember the turning to side to prevent fluids from aspiration.
This was stated as procedure even for a non-respiratory resuscitation, once the individual has stabilized.
I did not question the procedure in depth and the RN giving the CPR class I attended could not offer a better explanation other than for circulation.
That would coincide with the article from the link above.

Edited by mikes on 06/20/2005 14:40:46 MDT.

paul johnson
(pj) - F

Locale: LazyBoy in my Den - miss the forest
Re: Re: Re: BP lower on side on 06/20/2005 14:45:55 MDT Print View

wish i had payed better attention in Endocrinology class (Dr. H retired that year - we were his last class, & he would often fall asleep while lecturing in class - he would put the students to sleep as well). however...

i do remember that melatonin is primarily, not solely if i recall correctly, produced by the pineal gland. its production increases in response to decreased exposure to sunlight as i recall. meaning the eye's exposure to sunlight, not the skin (don't confuse melatonin with melanin which is a skin pigment) & is also related to one's circadian rhythm.

as we age, we generally produce less melatonin. this makes continuous sleeping for longer periods of time a bit more difficult. i, for one, can attest to this.

melatonin has some affect on lowering BP. take too much & a very bad headache may result. had this happen once & it reminded of a similar headache i once had from taking prescription vasodilators. my guess, based upon similarity of the headache, it was very uncomfortable, that my BP was low, but I didn't bother to measure it.

also, long term use of melatonin supplements may inhibit the body's natural production of melatonin.

it's prob. a good idea to only take melatonin upon your physician's orders.

Edited by pj on 06/20/2005 14:48:05 MDT.