It is bizarre for Japanese commuters to slept on the subway and still managed to wake up when it’s time to wake up.
Japan has a busy and hard-working society that makes it usual for commuters to take a nap during their ride on the subway. However, what makes it strange is that how they manage to wake up at the time they arrived at their stop.
It is really amazing that there are people who lose their consciousness inside a moving vehicle and still gets back on their senses the moment they arrived at their stop without any help from alarms or smartphones. Two doctors recently offered an insight on how Japanese people does that and this could be considered in future studies.
Dr. Marc I. Leavey, a primary-care specialist in Maryland, said to Science of Us that the commuter’s body could be used to waking up at a certain time every ride. The circadian rhythm or the force at work could be the body’s internal clock and such rhythms are built on a 24-hour cycle. However, their subway naps still questionable.
Dr. Leavey said:
“Your body is able to learn a routine as long as it’s a routine.”
Dr. Ronald Chervin, a neurologist and director of Michigan Medicine’s Sleep Disorders Center, told Science of Us that, “The brain does screen out some stimuli during sleep.”
It explains that the brain remains at work even while we sleep and the reason why commuters wake up at that time is that they could hear auditory cues such as the stop announcement or familiar sounds at a particular station. Dr. Chervin pointed out that the brain can hear some stimuli more than others such as one’s name even when it is spoken at the same volume as other names.
Moreover, he also said that a person could not be sleeping until his or her stop or wake up at each previous stop and fall back to sleep without any recollection. Because commuters don’t remember waking up at a previous station, the passenger only assumes sleeping all the way until their actual stop.
“You have to be awake for a certain amount of time to remember,” he added.
In Japan, this only means that a person is exhausted and tired of working that’s why they fell asleep on the subway. According to the New York Times, the word is inemuri, translated as “sleeping on duty,” but some argue to be better off as “sleeping while present.”
Sleeping while in a moving vehicle would be a result of something but waking up at one’s stop seems like a routine a person mastered. It maybe takes a practice to take a nap and eventually being able to wake up precisely as necessary.
Watch the video below:
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