Best mattresses for athletes

Mattresses & Pillows

Select mattress brands offer risk-free trials, allowing you to try the product before making the final purchase.

BestReviews is reader-supported and may earn an affiliate commission. Details.

Which mattresses for athletes are best?

Sleep plays a crucial part in our overall health and how we function throughout the day. Not getting a good night’s rest can result in tiredness or aches throughout the day. Having a reliable mattress to sleep on can pave the way toward a healthy lifestyle. 

With athletes being more dependent on being in peak condition, getting the best sleep helps with recovery and building muscle as they train. Better sleep can help with reducing the risk of muscular imbalances, which minimizes the risk of injury. If you’re looking for a supportive and reliable mattress, the DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress is the top choice. 

What to know before you buy a mattress for athletes

Size

There are typically six sizes of mattresses to choose from. Of course, it’s best to find a mattress that will have enough space to fit you and your sleeping buddy — if you’re sharing your bed. But if you’re a person of lesser height and don’t care about having space, going with a smaller size can save you some money. The six mattress sizes are Twin (38-by-75 inches), Twin XL (38-by-80 inches), Full (53-by-75 inches), Queen (60-by-80 inches), King (76-by-80 inches), and California King (72-by-84 inches). 

Types

The main types of mattresses are innerspring, air, foam and hybrid mattresses. There are also waterbeds, but those are less common nowadays and not recommended for athletes. Innerspring mattresses are a classic type and have been one of the original designs for mattresses. Also known as coil mattresses, they have metal springs to provide support and layers of padding for comfort on top. Cheaper mattresses tend to have fewer coils and padding, which should not be your preferred option. The more springs, the better. 

Air mattresses allow you to adjust the amount of firmness you want using internal air bladders that inflate and deflate, depending on your preference. Depending on the model, they can be controlled by a remote, control panel or an app. In addition, some air mattresses have individual sides that can be adjusted, which can be perfect if you have a partner. The downside of these mattresses is that some carry a noisy air pump. 

Foam mattresses use purely memory or latex foam, with some models having a layer of gel for isolating movement and cooling comfort. These mattresses can be great for supporting your weight while contouring to your body shape. On the other hand, hybrid mattresses offer a combination of both traits of an innerspring and foam mattress. The coil innerspring will act as support while the layers of foam and gel on top provide pressure relief and comfort. 

Firmness

The firmness of your mattress will depend on your personal preference. Some manufacturers use numbers to rate firmness, with 1 being the softest option and 10 being the firmest, helping you choose a specific level. For example, if you suffer from back pain, a firmer mattress could be more suitable, falling between 5 and 7 on the firmness scale. What’s more, it’s recommended that you avoid extreme soft and firm mattresses, as they are unlikely to provide a healthy night’s sleep. 

What to look for in a quality mattress for athletes

Pillow top

Generally made of cotton, pillow tops are an additional layer of cushioning and warmth to your mattress. They’re very soft and provide additional protection from old mattress springs. In addition, they’re generally made out of a breathable cotton material that wicks away moisture, which is a desirable feature of the best mattresses for athletes

Supports

A lack of support on the edges of the bed can make it uncomfortable maneuvering in and out of your bed. If you want more edge support, go with innerspring and hybrid models, as foam mattresses tend to lack support on the edges. However, high-end foam mattresses have defined edges made out of materials, such as metal rods, wood or extra-firm polyurethane foam. 

Temperature

Many mattresses absorb and exert heat, which can make your time in bed uncomfortable. Fortunately, some mattresses have gel layers, graphite infusions or celliant to improve airflow and regulate body temperature. However, keep in mind that memory foam models tend to retain heat. 

How much you can expect to spend on mattresses for athletes

For an inexpensive mattress that you need hastily, you’ll find inexpensive queen mattresses for $300-$500. Mid-range mattresses range from $500-$900 and expensive models can cost anywhere from $1,000-$2,000 for a premium feel.

Mattresses for athletes FAQ

How do I break in a mattress?

A. Depending on the model, it may take a few weeks to fully break in your mattress, so it takes patience. Some models may take 30 days or more to fully turn into their final shape. Mattresses packed tightly in a box may take longer to break in. After opening the mattresses’ packaging, roll or walk on its surface, evening out the interior. 

How often should I replace my mattress?

A. With proper cleaning, rotating and care, mattresses can last for several years. The material and your body type and activity level can play a factor in the mattress’s lifespan. Innerspring mattresses tend to last for approximately 7 years, while foam/gel and hybrid mattresses last for about 10 years. Air and water mattresses can last significantly longer as long as the internal bladders and pumps aren’t damaged.  

Look for signs of wear and tear throughout the mattresses’ lifespan. Worn-out tops, exposed or sharp parts, sags and dips can all be signs that it’s time to change your mattress. Besides physical changes in the mattress, if you notice your sleep quality worsening, be aware that you need to get rid of your mattress as soon as possible.

Other than buying a quality mattress, in what other ways can I improve my sleep?

A. Having a consistent sleep schedule can help with sleep, as you’ll naturally start to feel tired at bedtime. Stay away from caffeine and food before bed because its consumption makes you incapable of falling asleep. Bright screens and blue light can overstimulate your brain, which can contribute to difficulty sleeping. It’s recommended to turn one of those lights off at least two hours before bed. Some phones have the option for you to turn the blue light off. 

What’s the best mattress for athletes to buy?

Top mattress for athletes

DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress

DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress

What you need to know: This hybrid mattress provides just the right amount of support while keeping you comfortable. 

What you’ll love: The gel and memory foam combination provides a softness that’s just right for your body. The coils underneath give you the support needed to maintain spine alignment. 

What you should consider: This may not be firm enough for athletes with larger and heavier frames. 

Where to buy: Sold by DreamCloud

Top mattress for athletes for the money

Puffy Lux Mattress

Puffy Lux Mattress

What you need to know: With a stain-resistant cover, this mattress stays clean and adjusts to your body’s movements

What you’ll love: It features a stain-resistant cover that’s machine washable. Its six-layer sleep system is built to provide more breathability, contouring and enhanced support for back pain. 

What you should consider: Some users have found the mattress to be too hot. 

Where to buy: Sold by Puffy

Worth checking out

Perfect Cloud Hybrid 8-Inch Memory Foam Mattress

Perfect Cloud Hybrid 8-Inch Memory Foam Mattress

What you need to know: This multi-layered model helps with stiffness, as the temperature-regulated constriction contours to your body shape. 

What you’ll love: The mattress is infused with a charcoal-based layer that reduces odors and improves comfort. The combination of the gel top and coils underneath provides a soft yet firm experience. 

What you should consider: Because of its vacuum sealing, it may take over a month for the mattress to be broken in. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Ade Hennis writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.