Haiku’s Guide to a Japanese Sleep System

Haiku’s Guide to a Japanese Sleep System

Traditions, especially those that have been time tested, should be revered and upheld. Tatami Mats and the accompanying bedding that comprise the traditional Japanese Sleep System provide a natural, clean, and firm sleep that is ideal for those seeking a healthier and minimalist approach to firm support and proper alignment. For help navigating Haiku’s Japanese Sleep System, we compiled a quick guide to help you understand the various components and why they fit together so perfectly.

Raku Tatami Mats Stacked--Sage and Black

Tatami Mats

The first part of our Japanese Sleep System, Tatami Mats are artfully crafted in accordance with time tested traditions. Featuring an all-natural Rush grass exterior and a rice straw foundation, our Tatami Mats contain no wafer or particle board interiors. Instead our mats feature a layered rice straw core for a healthier and more natural mat that provides the firmness and slight give traditional Tatami Mats are known for.

With zero-chemical exposition, our Tatami Mats provide a cleaner, healthier, and toxin-free sleep surface as well as relief from physical strain. Tatami Mats offer a supportive surface with a slight give, helping posture without the hardness of a solid floor. Additionally, Tatami Mats help purify the air by absorbing nitrogen dioxide, help regulate moisture by absorbing it during periods of high humidity and releasing it back into the air during dry spells, and help control temperature by behaving as a natural insulator.

Traditional Japanese Shiki Mats

Shiki Mat

Next we have the Shiki Mats. Traditional Japanese Shikibutons are relatively thin, futon style mattresses that provide natural comfort without detracting from the physical benefits of sleeping on a firm, flat surface. For those simply not accustomed to the extreme firmness that accompanies sleeping directly on the floor or Tatami Mats, the Shiki Mat grants that layer of plush comfort. Haiku Designs’ Shiki Mats feature all-natural materials such as organic cotton, natural wool, and organic latex.

Additionally, these mats are thin enough that they can be folded up and stored during the day so as to not occupy multi-functional floor space, as is customary in traditional Japanese homes. Shiki Mats are also thin and foldable to allow for easy cleaning. All-natural products such as Tatami Mats and Shiki Mats are easily and conveniently cleansed when exposed to the sun. The warmth of the sun’s rays naturally disinfect and remove excessive moisture to prevent potential mold or dust-mites. Another benefit of Shiki Mats is that your sleep surface is easily customizable to suit your specific needs. Simply stack a couple mats together to achieve your ideal support and comfort levels.

Pillow filled with Traditional Buckwheat Hulls

Buckwheat Pillow

Third in our Japanese Sleep System is the Buckwheat Pillow. Renowned for their supportive properties, hull fill pillows conform to your body effortlessly and organically. Exquisitely textured, Buckwheat hulls trap a lot of air that is then pushed through the pillow and circulated when you move in your sleep. This specific quality makes the Buckwheat Pillow an exceptional option for people who perspire in their sleep, as the air flow helps to keep the pillow cool and dry.

Haiku’s Buckwheat Pillow is available in three sizes, each of which provides specific levels of support to suit your needs. The Small Buckwheat Pillow is perfect for use as lumbar support or it can be placed on top of your regular pillow to add neck support while you sleep. The Medium Buckwheat Pillow offers great neck and head support while the Large Pillow provides support for your head, neck, and shoulders. Whatever your support needs, there is a Buckwheat Pillow for you.

Raku Japanese Tatami Platform Bed

Raku Tatami Platform Bed

Last but not least we have the Raku Tatami Platform Bed. The Raku gives tradition a modern twist and elevates the Japanese Sleep System... literally, by taking the Tatami Mats off of the floor and onto a more western style bed. Our Raku Platform Bed is a stunning, low profile bed that provides an excellent frame for the Tatami Mats. Forever sleek and minimalist, the Raku Platform Bed helps the western home adapt to this eastern sleep system by effortlessly combining tradition and modernity. The Raku is crafted in sustainably sourced, solid Indonesian wood and features an easy-to-assemble design.

Additionally, the elevated, slatted platform allows for continuous airflow through your Tatami Mats which decreases moisture buildup. The natural composition of Tatami Mats, along with the fact that it is traditionally placed on the floor, means that with a truly traditional sleep system you would have to air out the mats much more often to ensure excessive moisture won’t result in mold. With the Raku Platform Bed, that is not necessary.

Despite centuries of Western “advancements”, the Japanese Sleep System has remained virtually untouched. While we in the west continue to strive for the perfect mattress (we’ve tried spring, foam, latex, hybrids, adjustable, those weird purple squares…) the Japanese Sleep System remains the same. Simple. Clean. Natural. Where is our search for “perfection” taking us? Perhaps it is time we acknowledge that the Japanese might be onto something. Try it for yourself. Experience the Japanese Sleep System with us at Haiku Designs.

Back to blog