Better sleep for life
Follow us while we help five sleepless Kiwis to get ‘SleepFit’

Six weeks, five sleepers, one goal – better sleep for life.

The hunt for five sleepless Kiwis is over and the journey to a better night’s sleep starts now.

Sleep offers the body and brain time to restore and recover, and for over 60 per cent of Kiwis to be missing out on their best sleep is not good enough. So, we’ve introduced the SleepFit Programme, designed to help Kiwis unlock their best sleep with better sleep solutions and tips.

When we first met our sleeper, Jillian, she rarely got a whole night of shuteye and often woke up during the night from being too hot. But, from her SleepFit journey, Jillian has picked up a pool of tips to help improve her sleep so she can wake up feeling motivated and ready to take on the day.

From Jillian’s bed matching session with Sleepyhead’s SleepMap technology, Jillian was matched to a luxury Sanctuary Escape bed curated with natural wool and silk. In addition, Jillian's new bed features KülKōte temperature regulating technology to help tackle in-bed temperature fluctuations and make her sleep more comfortable.

Five weeks with her Sleepyhead bed, and Jillian is never looking back!

"I'm amazed at how incredibly comfortable and luxurious my new mattress feels. I actually look forward to going to bed now. I absolutely love it, and my dogs love it too – so much so that I've had to wake them up in the morning!"

At the heart of Jillian’s Sleepyhead bed is an advanced Sensorzone support system that uses hand-placed springs and a Dreamfoam core to provide maximum levels of support.

"I'm sleeping really well, and I'm so happy not to be waking up with the aches and pains I used to have in the morning. I'm finally transitioning from a night owl to an early bird!"

Jillian's biggest challenge was understanding the flow-on effect of staying up late and how it impacted simple decisions, including food choices and exercise.

Meeting with Bernice Tuffery for her sleep coaching sessions has helped Jillian join the dots and take the steps needed to fulfil her dream goal of having the energy to wake up at 6am and start her day with a morning walk.

Sleep coach Bernice Tuffery says that as a night owl, Jillian's chronotype makes staying up late feel natural. Those hours before midnight gave her precious 'me time' that she treasured. But with standard 8-5 work hours and 6am exercise goals, she knew she needed to shift her patterns to feel motivated and active in the morning.

By learning what she needed to do to support her body in making these adjustments, could her mornings become quality 'me time'?

Here are Bernice's top tips for becoming a morning person:

- Have a consistent sleep schedule - the same on weekdays and weekends.
- Gradually shift your bedtime and wake time earlier using 15-minute increments - giving your body at least a few days to adjust to each change.
- Develop a morning routine that motivates you to get out of bed
- schedule things you genuinely enjoy. For Jillian, this was meeting her friends for a walk.
- Get outside in the natural light and move your body in the morning.
- Shift mealtimes earlier and be consistent with them. (Night owls tend to eat later)
- Be strategic with caffeine - if needed, enjoy it in the morning and know your personal boundaries. Science shows that if consumed later in the day or in excess, coffee risks sabotaging your goal of falling asleep and having a good night's sleep.

Be kind to your body as you learn to become a morning person.

Sleep offers the body and brain time to restore and recover, and for over 60 per cent of Kiwis to be missing out on their best sleep is not good enough. So, we’ve introduced the SleepFit Programme, designed to help Kiwis unlock their best sleep with better sleep solutions and tips.

Before joining the SleepFit Programme, our sleeper Kristie had trouble getting a full night's sleep due to partner disturbance. In addition, she and her partner experienced mismatched comfort levels, battling over the perfect temperature when sleeping.

After three weeks with her brand-new Sleepyhead bed, Kristie has found the solution to all her sleep issues.

Combining our bed specialist's expertise and SleepMap technology, we found the perfect mattress match for Kristie. The Swisstek Elite. Her new bed features KülKōte technology that regulates her and her partner's body temperature for a more comfortable sleep. The Swisstek Elite is also crafted from a unique spring system to minimise partner disturbance.

"Single best thing about my new bed? There's almost zero partner disturbance! My partner moves around a lot during his sleep, which has always been an issue for me. With my new Sleepyhead bed, I wake up far less from him moving at night."

Working from home for most of the week means that Kristie is often in her bed during the day and, as a result, frequently experiences swelling in her legs. To help, we also matched Kristie to a Sleepyhead adjustable base so she can use her bed as a sofa with complete support and comfort.

"Being able to switch quickly between a flat position for sleep and an elevated position for other tasks such as reading or using my laptop is a big plus. When I have swollen legs, I simply elevate the bottom of my mattress to soothe the pain and help me fall asleep at night."

From her sleep coaching sessions with Bernice Tuffery, Kristie has learnt that to improve the quality of her sleep, it's not just the moments right before bed that are important but also the way you structure the rest of your day.

Bernice says that working from home can disrupt our daily routine, and we may not be conscious of the impact it has on us until our sleep unravels.

"Pre-Covid, Kristie's out-of-home work routine included getting up early, getting dressed, making her bed, going outside and walking to public transport to get to work. These simple morning activities supported her circadian rhythm - they got 'wakefulness' underway early in the day. In addition, being up and moving helped elevate her body temperature and being outside with natural light reduced her melatonin - the sleepiness hormone." 

"In a busy and spacious work environment, Kristie enjoyed a lot of mental and physical stimulation as well as social engagement and connection. So, by evening, her body was ready for a good night's sleep."

Once Kristie understood what her body needed to support her sleep, she integrated some simple changes into her work-from-home routine.

“She used a consistent sleep schedule to get going earlier in the day. She added a morning walk to boost her body temp and switched off her melatonin early in the day. She conscientiously booked social contact and activities she enjoyed, keeping life vibrant and exciting. Understanding and working with her biology, she learned how to fill her days in ways that supported her circadian rhythm and set her up for a good night’s sleep.” 

Welcome to the SleepFit Programme by Sleepyhead. We're in the business of helping people have their best sleep. We know the right mattress is the foundation of a good night’s snooze, but there is much more we can do to help remedy New Zealand’s worsening sleep health.

Sleep offers the body and brain time to restore and recover, and for over 60 per cent of Kiwis to be missing out on their best sleep is not good enough. So, we’ve introduced the SleepFit Programme, designed to help Kiwis unlock their best sleep with better sleep solutions and tips.

Do you struggle to sleep due to partner disturbance? Or find that years of shift work have impacted your sleep? If your answer is yes, you might find our sleeper Faye McCann has some valuable tips for you.

Before starting the SleepFit series, Faye found herself unable to get comfortable, tossing and turning into the early morning hours, often leaving her feeling unrested and desperate for a cup of coffee.

Four weeks into the SleepFit Programme, the tide has turned for Faye.

Thanks to Sleepyhead SleepMap technology, Faye was matched to a Serenity Peace bed, which is made with pocket spring technology to deliver targeted support and minimise partner disturbance.

“My Sleepyhead bed is so comfortable, it's like sleeping on a cloud, and the additional space from the King size means my partner’s different sleep times no longer disturb my sleep," says Faye.

Interestingly, Faye was not matched to the bed she thought was best for her.

"I've always gone for firm beds, thinking this would be better for me, so I was surprised when the mapping technology recommended a softer feel. Though it has been amazing and so much better for me."

The SleepMap technology uses a pressure map to find the perfect bed to support your needs.

Like many Kiwis, Faye is often on her phone right up until it's time to shut her eyes, but after advice from Sleep Coach Bernice Tuffery, Faye has found that switching off her phone earlier has made a massive difference to her sleep.

“Our phones are our best friends for wakefulness and worst enemies for sleep. We know we shouldn't use them before sleeping because the light they emit messes with our melatonin, the helpful hormone that helps us fall asleep, and the relentless scrolling over-stimulates our brain when we are trying to switch off. Yet many of us keep them by our beds and are on our screens well into the night. So, we know our sleep suffers, but there's often a gap between knowing what we should do and actually doing it,” says Bernice.

Once a behaviour becomes a habit, we no longer think about it - it's automatic. We just do it. Bernice says the trick is turning the helpful behaviour into a new habit and the unhelpful behaviour a conscious choice. Neuroscience has shown us that ease and convenience are crucial to creating a habit. In contrast, if things are inconvenient or difficult this can help to break unhelpful habits.

To stop us from using our phones before bed or at night, we need to make grabbing the phone an annoying hassle. The key to this is keeping your phone out of arm's reach.

To help break her phone-in-bed habit, Faye chose to put her phone on the other side of the room. She knew it was still there, which was reassuring because of her partner's shift work, but if she felt compelled to check it, she'd have to drag herself out of her comfy, warm bed and walk across the room. That, of course, would only happen if it was truly necessary! So even though Faye loved having her phone in bed, a simple habit adjustment made all the difference.

What Faye called mission impossible no longer seems so impossible thanks to the SleepFit Programme.

Welcome to the SleepFit Programme by Sleepyhead. We're in the business of helping people have their best sleep. We know the right mattress is the foundation of a good night’s snooze, but there is much more we can do to help remedy New Zealand’s worsening sleep health.

Sleep offers the body and brain time to restore and recover, and for over 60 per cent of Kiwis to be missing out on their best sleep is not good enough. So, we’ve introduced the SleepFit Programme, designed to help Kiwis unlock their best sleep with better sleep solutions and tips.

With only two more weeks left of the SleepFit series, we caught up with sleeper Andrea Willis to see how she has progressed on her journey to a better night's sleep. 

Andrea has never had an issue falling asleep but would regularly find herself waking up multiple times in the night suffering from aches and pains.

Her 15-year-old + mattress was no longer providing her much-needed support! 

Utilising Sleepyhead's SleepMap technology, Andrea was fitted with our Chiropractic HDX bed. This technology uses pressure mapping to generate an individual body map and identify which bed would best match a person’s comfort needs.

Our Chiropractic mattress is made with the Chiropractic endorsed Torquezone HDX spring system which helps give better spinal alignment and support where it’s needed the most.

What’s more, the Chiropractic HDX helps regulate temperature using KülKōte technology! Giving Andrea the best of both worlds.

Four weeks in her new bed and Andrea says she feels like a princess!

“My body is better supported when I sleep. I don't have the same pain from pressure points in my lower back when I wake. I love the feeling when I first get into bed at night. There is just something wonderful about climbing into a bed that supports you.”

Working with Sleep Coach Bernice Tuffery, Andrea has also implemented some great new tactics into her nighttime routine. As an avid reader, Andrea has set up a dedicated reading space in her room so she can decompress at night before jumping into bed.

“Andrea brought real curiosity to her SleepFit journey. This open-minded attitude served her so well and is key to finding your way to a great night’s sleep. She wanted to understand more about her sleep, identify what she was doing that was unhelpful and what she could do differently to create the conditions for sleeping well. Already she had some great behaviours in place and sleep was mostly ‘ok’, but by Friday night her energy level crashed.

Sleep coaching helped her discover a bed-time/wake-time routine that works for her life, and many tiny habits to integrate into her days and nights that support great sleep. Like making her bed each morning, having bed-linen and sleepwear in natural fibres, using a sleep mask to block out the light in her room, keeping an eye on her caffeine levels, and the incredible value of non-screen wind-down time at the end of the day,” says Bernice.  

“By actively experimenting with her sleep attitudes and behaviours, Andrea knows for herself what works. Once you personally ‘know’ what supports great sleep, you can’t unknow it. It gives you freedom and choice. Andrea now has real confidence in her sleep. She knows what to do (and what not to do) to have a great week of sleep and feel full of life for her weekend.” Andrea is well on her way to waking up on the right side of the bed every day!

Under the covers with Nicole De Pina

Welcome to the SleepFit Programme by Sleepyhead. We're in the business of helping people have their best sleep. We know the right mattress is the foundation of a good night’s snooze, but there is much more we can do to help remedy New Zealand’s worsening sleep health.

Sleep offers the body and brain time to restore and recover, and for over 60 per cent of Kiwis to be missing out on their best sleep is not good enough. So, we’ve introduced the SleepFit Programme, designed to help Kiwis unlock their best sleep with better sleep solutions and tips.

For this instalment, we sat down with sleeper Nicole De Pina to chat about her SleepFit journey and check on her sleep health.

Nicole put up with poor sleep for a long time and never realised how much it impacted her daily life until she upgraded her twenty-year-old bed to a new one and met with sleep coach Bernice Tuffery.

“I’m loving my new Sleepyhead bed! It's so comfortable. I've had it for only two weeks, and it’s already helping me get a better night's sleep,” says Nicole.

The SleepMap technology powered by Sleepyhead used pressure mapping technology to generate an individual pressure map and identified that Nicole needed a bed with a medium plush feel to meet her comfort needs.

In addition, our bed specialist recommended a mattress from the Sleepyhead Serenity Essence range to relieve pressure and provide Nicole with targeted support.

“The single best thing about my new bed is that it was matched to me and took into account all my body pressure points, including the fact that I'm a side sleeper.

“It’s only now that I realise how bad our old bed was. I'm not waking up feeling like a 90-year-old anymore. There's cushioning where I need it the most, and a lot less partner disturbance which I didn't realise was impacting my sleep."

With today's busy lifestyle, Nicole is not the only Kiwi struggling with sleep. It can be exhausting and all too demanding to find time for yourself when you already have so many things to think about daily.

“The most challenging thing has been getting more of a routine and schedule around bedtime and wakeups. It’s a work in progress but it's been great to explore quantity vs quality of sleep and has given me back some time in the evenings to unwind,” says Nicole. 

Sleep Easy Author and Sleep Coach Bernice Tuffery says people are primarily concerned with sleep duration. It’s common to try to catch up on lost sleep by going to bed earlier, staying in bed longer in the morning or having a nap. But extending the opportunity to sleep can be one of the factors that perpetuates insomnia.

While it’s important to give yourself adequate opportunity to sleep, being in bed longer than your body needs can compromise the quality of your sleep. You might have trouble falling asleep or find that your sleep is light or fragmented with annoying wakeups in the night.

Great sleep consists of duration, continuity, and depth. It’s about looking after the quantity and the quality of your sleep.

As our sleepers settle into their new Sleepyhead beds, they continue their sleepFit journey by making slight adjustments to their lifestyle habits.

Across our five sleepers, Bernice Tuffery has identified two reoccurring and very common issues - inconsistent bedtimes and overstimulation from screens before sleep.

In this week’s update, our five sleepers learn how to implement a regular bedtime routine to improve their sleep.

“Our human brain really does like routine. A consistent bedtime routine lets your body clock know it’s time to unplug and bedtime is approaching,” says Bernice Tuffery.

Having a regular bedtime routine is healthy for adults too.

Taking control of your daily sleep schedule is a powerful step toward getting a better night’s sleep.

If like our sleepers, you have trouble sleeping, creating a bedtime routine is one of the smartest things you can do for yourself. After running around in mental overdrive, a bedtime routine is your cue to slow down and focus on what matters the most – you.

The benefit of having a bedtime routine is that it’s catered to you. Creating a bedtime routine puts your body in a relaxed state, and by the time you’re finished, your body should feel relaxed and ready for lights out.

Consistency is key to a successful bedtime routine. Set an alarm or notification on your phone to start your routine at the same time each night and keep as close as possible to the same bedtime seven days a week.

Your bedtime routine should take between 30 to 60 minutes. This will give you enough time to unwind without feeling rushed. The goal is to build consistency, which will train your body for sleep and encourage productivity the next day.

Crafting a screen-free bedtime routine.

Like many Kiwis, our sleepers turn to screens to unwind after a long day at work.

The blue light emitted from your phone and other electronic devices can impair the body's own natural night-time sleep response.

“It is not just blue light that's harmful, it's mental stimulation that can stop you from getting a good night's sleep,” says Bernice.

Screens from TVs, smartphones and laptops emit blue light that stimulates the body’s internal clock (circadian rhythm), keeping you buzzing long after it’s time to hibernate for the night.

Sleep studies have shown that exposure to high amounts of blue light before bed can lower melatonin levels, resulting in sleeplessness and delayed REM sleep. It's recommended to shut off screens 30 to 45 minutes before bedtime.

There's a fine line to walk between sleep and technology when it comes to getting a quality night's rest. Wait until the morning to binge-watch Tik Tok videos or check your Instagram. They're not going anywhere.

It's much easier to doze off smoothly if you are relaxed. Quiet reading, low-impact stretching, listening to soothing music, and relaxation exercises are examples of ways to help you unwind and finish the day.

Once you’ve relaxed and are ready for bed, climb onto your cosy mattress with your favourite pillow and drift off to sleep.

The foundation to a great night’s sleep starts with the right bed!

By combining our bed specialist’s expertise and Sleep Mapping technology we were able to find the perfect mattress for our sleepless five.

SleepMap, powered by Sleepyhead, is a state-of-the-art bed matching system that uses pressure mapping technology to generate an individual pressure map, and identify your comfort needs.

Each sleeper was recommended a personally fitted Sleepyhead bed based on their preferred sleep position, current sleep issues and goals.

Can you guess which bed belongs to which of our sleepers? Enter now to be in to win a set of Sleepyhead Luxury Hush Wool & Silk FusionGel Pillows valued at $350 each.

Time to reassess your mattress? Your bed can become your best ally for a good night’s sleep instead of a trigger for sleep disturbance.

Older mattresses (those over eight years old) can contribute to back pain and allergies and can transfer more motion, making sleep more disruptive.

Introducing our five sleepless Kiwis

Over six weeks, The Sleepyhead SleepFit Programme will uncover the potential causes affecting our sleepless five and track the improvements made as they strive towards better quality sleep. Working closely with Sleep Easy Author and Sleep Coach Bernice

Tuffery to help our sleepless five feel confident about getting a good night’s sleep.

And for all Kiwis struggling with sleep, we invite you to come on this journey with us. We will be sharing expert insights, tips, and proven ways to unlock the power of sleep for all New Zealanders.

Let us introduce you to our five sleepers:


Jillian is a single mum from Takapuna and is one of the 30% of Kiwis sharing her bed with furry friends.

She is highly dissatisfied with her sleep and rarely gets a full night of shuteye, consistently waking up in the night from being too hot. Jillian’s dream goal is to have the energy to get up at 6am and go for a morning walk. She believes a better night's sleep will help improve her health and well-being.


Andrea understands that as she ages a good night’s sleep is vital to maintaining a good level of health, but she is not sure where to start.

She falls asleep very easily but struggles to stay asleep, waking up multiple times during the night, which leaves her feeling unrested in the morning. Her goal is to improve her sleep patterns and work with Sleep Coach, Bernice Tuffery, to learn tips and tricks to help improve her quality of sleep and bounce right out of bed.


Nicole is in her mid-forties and mum to a gorgeous 9-year-old boy. She has been happily married for 12 years, and she and her husband always talked about upgrading their bed to a new one but there was always a reason not to do it. She was shocked when she realised her bed was well over 20 years old!

Her current issues include partner disturbance and waking up with body aches and pains, which she believes is due to her uncomfortable bed. She currently feels like she’s about 90 years old waking up with sore hips every morning. Her goal is to feel rested on her days off, so she doesn’t feel like she has to catch up on sleep, and for a good night’s sleep to become the new normal and not an exception.


Faye used to be a shift worker and getting a good night’s sleep during the day was mission impossible, so she realised then the importance of a good quality sleep in order to perform at her best.

Now, she struggles to get comfortable at night, often tossing and turning into the early hours. A good night’s sleep to Faye means waking up feeling refreshed and being able to tackle her day at 100%. She would love to have a cup of coffee in the morning, not because she needs it, but simply because she loves it.


Kristie and her partner experience the age-old battle of the temperature argument, never finding themselves on common ground; one of them is too hot and one of them is too cold. As a result, they have separate duvets one with a built-in electric blanket and one very light weight.

What’s more, Kirstie uses her bed as a sofa to watch TV and struggles to sleep well since she started to work from home at the beginning of the pandemic.

Sleep fit is a tailored sleep solution series brought to you by Sleepyhead.

Over six weeks, as we track the improvements of our sleepless five, we’ll also be sharing expert insights, tips, and proven ways to discover the power of sleep for all New Zealanders.

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