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How To Sleep on a Japanese Futon

Many people in Japan sleep on futons, which are distinct from the western piece of furniture that goes by the same name. There are tricks to bedding down on a Japanese futon.


  • Step 1: Remove the futon from the closet, and lay it on the floor. Japanese futons are large enough for one person to sleep on.
  • TIP: Japanese bedding consists of a mattress, called a futon or _shikibuton_, a sheet, a quilt, and a pillow. It is stored in a closet or a corner of the bedroom during the day to conserve space.
  • Step 2: Place a sheet over the futon and tuck the edges under the futon.
  • Step 3: Place the quilt, called a kakebuton, over the futon.
  • Step 4: Place the pillow, called a _makura_, at the head of the bed. The makura is stuffed with beans and will conform to the shape of your head.
  • Step 5: Stretch yourself out on the covered futon under the quilt, and enjoy a good night's sleep.
  • Step 6: Place the bedding in a closet after you get up in the morning. Fold the futon into the shape of a Z and place it flat on the floor. Place the quilt, folded in quarters, on top. Then place the pillow on top of everything.
  • FACT: Research suggests that comfortable bedding is crucial to getting a good night's sleep.

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