When people think of household essentials, hammocks aren't typically amongst the first thoughts. Only in Key West may you find people who truly use hammocks as their only form of chair. Several months ago I started working at a store that sells them and have earned the title, "Hammock Expert." While this usually just cracks people up, I've actually learned quite a bit about the benefits of a good quality hammock that most people don't know.
1. Hammocks are good for your back.
The whole "sell your bed" thing isn't a joke. They are legitimately fantastic for your back and here's why. When you sit in a chair or lay on a normal bed, there's a gap in between your lower back and the seat. People stuff pillows, blankets, and fancy contraptions in between to help reduce the pressure. With a hammock, it follows your shape and leaves no gap. It evens out your body's weight and alleviates the pressure from your lower back and creates the sensation of floating. The moment a newbie will sit in one of our store's hammocks, you can see the revelation on their face every time. It's a sensation we don't find from any other furniture. Fancy memory foams are great for your mattress but why should you have to wait until you sleep to give your body a rest?
2. They are to-the-touch comfortable.
Of course, hammocks will vary in material and quality, but man, if you can find a cotton or weatherproof soft-spun polyester one, they are soft. Laying your entire body in coziness plus the physical benefits I already mentioned?? That's reason enough, but here are some more…
3. If well made, they will last you 10+ years.
Many people buy hammocks from Mexico and various islands. While those hammocks are often nice, finding a weatherproof one sets you up for at least a decade. Good quality hammocks are incredibly durable and when they're machine washable you can't go wrong. Splashed in salt water? Laying in the dirt? Somebody's snack melted or dripped? Washing machines are Heaven-made. Enjoy your hammock in your current home and perhaps the next couple homes to come. If you have a tiny house or live the nomad life, take it with you wherever you go. If your family grows, more people will get the chance to enjoy that one purchase you made years ago.
4. Hammocks can be enjoyed practically anywhere.
My goodness, do you have options. Camping trips allow you to set up your hammock around trees for the night. Laying on a hammock and listening to the soothing waves beat those hard beach chairs any day. You can bring the adventure to your everyday home and set it up on a patio or in your own bedroom! One-point hammocks (something like a hammock chair that doesn't require two different trees) are amazing for bedrooms and living areas. With only one hole you can drill your whole set up into a beam in your ceiling and use it as a piece of furniture. No lie, I'm actually sitting in mine right now enjoying the beautiful morning sky in my backyard as I type this.
5. The color options allow expression.
Hammocks can be crazy colorful! You can get rainbow multi-color madness or be suave with neutral colors to match its surroundings. It is always fun watching kids pick out their hammocks because they get to choose one that represents them. Is it their favorite color? Bedroom wall color? A carefree splash of colors? Whether a child in body or heart, these fun pieces allow you to shine your own color and feel happy with your choice to relax.
6. You can have them for yourself, you and your significant other, a pet, or the whole family!Giphy
Just look at them bears go! There are a lot of hammock variations out there. There are hammock chairs meant for a single person and there are loveseat swings or duo singles if you want to snuggle with a loved one. Many hammocks are totally durable for a cat or dog to hop in and join too! Then, the typical favorite, there are huge Mayan hammocks that fit 3+ people and provide the whole family with a cozy couch and a crazy cute Christmas card photo stuffed with giggles and funny faces.
7. Because you work hard and deserve a little zen.
Our culture measures our lives and successes by how much we hustle and how much we "do." There are so many older people that say their biggest regrets are not appreciating the smaller moments while they were younger. So often we wake up, go to work, work on something else, go to sleep, and do it all again. But there is absolutely nothing wrong with giving yourself time every single day to just "be." While it's necessary and we shouldn't consider a little "me time" a treat, I know my hammock helps me enjoy that time to simply "be."
Next time a holiday rolls around or you want to treat yourself after a personal victory, get yourself a hammock. You won't regret it once you start using it and man, will your body, mind, and spirit thank you for it. Happy hammocking!