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How To Stop A Hammock From Swinging & Maximize Sleep Comfort

What is the best way to stop my hammock from swinging?

The best way to stop your hammock from swinging is by using bungee tie out chords. Attach one by your knee and one by the opposite shoulder and this should steady you quite quickly.

The chords don’t need to have a massive amount of elasticity, as the more they have the longer they will take to steady you. However, it is important to have at least a little elasticity in the chords. This is because using non-bungee chords could lead to your hammock becoming damaged and will also mean the pegs that anchor the chords can be pulled out much more easily.

If you use trekking poles or walking sticks, they can be utilized to steady you also. Some may find that they get more sway at first but once they’re used to getting in and out of the hammock the swing will lessen.

What is the best way to set up my hammock?

Firstly keep an eye on where you tie off either end of the hammock. If possible you want them to be level. You won’t be very comfortable sleeping in a hammock with your feet much higher than your head for a prolonged period.

Don’t forget to take the elasticity of the hammock into consideration when setting the height. If you’re hoping to hang your hammock so you lay quite low, you could end up on the ground if you’re not careful.

Some people make the mistake of pulling their hammock too tight. This is because they are attempting to make the hammock flat but this isn’t right. Rather than creating a flat hammock, which is pretty much impossible, you will create a situation where once you lay in the hammock the sides will pull tight around you and create a really uncomfortable experience.

A tight hammock also puts a lot of pressure on your anchor points and massively increases the chance of collapse.

Keeping the hammock on the loose side will create a much more comfortable space. You will have more room to stretch out and will be able to utilize the full area of the hammock as well as feel a lot less restricted.

Once you’ve got your hammock set, you may choose to use a tarp for protection from the elements.  Check out this article for information on tarps and camping without a tent.

How do I sleep flat in a hammock?

Now you’ve got your nice loose hammock with plenty of space, you are ready to lay flat. This would not have been achievable if you had pulled the hammock too tight.

Lay in the center of your hammock. Next, move your legs around 12 inches to one side. You should feel them become more in line with your torso. Finally, move your head and shoulders around 12 inches the opposite way. You should now be laid as flat as your hammock allows and will hopefully be ready for a great nights sleep.

Remember, not all hammocks are created equal and people come in all different shapes and sizes. Experiment with your hammock until you find your sweet spot.

Can I sleep on my side in a hammock?

If you have been using the old method of sleeping straight down the middle of the hammock then you will struggle to sleep on your side because of the bend in the hammock.

By sleeping at an angle and creating a flatter surface, you are opening up more possibilities when it comes to sleeping positions. Also, as hammocks reduce the amount of pressure on the body you will find that a comfortable sleeping position is much more achievable than in a bed.

What size hammock do I need?

Believe it or not, hammock lengths don’t really vary too much. Unless you’re extremely tall then it’s not something that you really need to worry about. It is said that, as a rule, your hammock should be at least 24 inches longer than you are tall. But you will find that this applies to most hammocks anyway, apart from in extreme cases.

The real choice when it comes to the size of your hammock is whether or not you would like a single or a double. People often opt for a double hammock for themselves so the decision is not always based on whether you’re going to be alone or sharing.

Single hammocks are easier to pack and are not as heavy to carry, which is a bonus when hiking with a backpack. They usually measure a width of around 4 to 5 foot. Single hammocks aren’t as spacious as their counterparts, although you might be able to squeeze two in at a push, if the opportunity arose, you would struggle for comfort. Also, as a single is only designed for one person you would be risking damage to your hammock.

Double hammocks, on the other hand, are designed to cater for two people. They usually have a width of around 5 to 6 feet and are much more spacious than a single hammock. Check out our article on couple’s tents and romantic camping ideas if you’re planning a trip with your partner.

Unfortunately, they weigh more, take up more space in your backpack, are harder to pack and will require a little more space to set up. Other than that we would always choose a double over a single where possible. But it really depends on your own situation and preferences.

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