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The shape of our body, total overall body weight we carry, and how that weight is distributed over a mattress surface rank only second to the position we sleep in. It comes down to determining what part these key factors play in relieving crucial pressure points and being able to offer correct spinal alignment in a mattress that will stand the test of time. No two people have the exact same shape and weight and these are differences you will want to take note of when choosing your next mattress.
Next to sleeping position, our body weight and shape will play the biggest role in how well each layer relieves pressure and supports you for proper spinal alignment. There are many differences in needs between people with different weights and shapes … so lets take a look at what they are.
As a rule of thumb the bigger and heavier we are the thicker comfort layer we will need. People with above average weights may require 4 inches of comfort layering as opposed to only 3 inches for instance. This is because a larger person sinking deeper into the mattress increases the perception of softness thicker layering. The same principle can be applied to firmer foam layers which can feel softer to heavier people than average weight and sized individuals.
This perception of softness is quite normal and is affected by how far someone sinks down into the mattress. Firm upper comfort layers is an important part of proper weight distribution and how well the pressure relief for the bigger sleeper and is vital and can be expected to feel as soft to them as a softer layer should feel when slept on by a lighter weight person.
These firmer support layers can help stop the heavier parts of the body from sinking and sagging down too far, a position that can push the spine out of alignment. Examples of comfort layer thickness compared to body weight.
Below average body weight = Can often get away with softer and thinner comfort layering. Core support layers can conceivably be of an average or softer firmness.
Average body weight = Comfort layers of average softness and thickness. Core support layers average firmness.
Above average body weight = Comfort layers and core support layers should be thicker and firmer.
The taboo subject no one wants to talk about is body weight and shape but how it is distributed are key factors when picking out the right mattress. Curvy body types with more pronounced hips, shoulders, and bellies etc. require deeper support for the most effective pressure relief. A sleeping position with more gaps and curves to fill will need to be thicker and softer than those that are less curvy and sleep in a position that is flatter with better weight distribution of body fat. This sleeper will find they require a thicker comfort layer than normal. They should select a firmer support layer to help balance the sinking in with the sinking down into the mattress. Fill bigger gaps and curvy body shapes with thicker layer or layers. Support more weight by increasing bot cores support and comfort layer firmness.
Average body shape and weight distribution = average softness and thickness of mattress comfort layers is recommended along with average firmness of the core supporting layers
Curvy body shape and uneven body weight distribution= softer and thicker comforting layers in addition to making sure the support layers are firmer
Straight/flat even weight distribution and body shape = These body types will find firmer/thinner comfort layers to be most comfortable along with the use of average core support layers