Bolster pillows, some say it is a “comforter for children”, some say it has actual orthopedic uses, while some others say that it is nothing more than a piece of decoration. Just what are they used for exactly?
Bolster pillows actually serve a wide variety of usage:
- As a support pillow for side sleepers.
- As a workout prop for yoga.
- To provide comfort as a body pillow.
- To add extra height and support while lying flat on the bed.
- Protect toddlers from bumping into the bed, although this method of usage is controversial.
- As a decorative piece.
That covers the quick explanation, but how are bolsters used in each case? Read on to find out!
1) AS A SUPPORT PILLOW FOR THE SIDE SLEEPERS
People who sleep on their side are also fussy sleepers. If you are a fellow side sleeper using only one thin pillow, you are doing it wrong and sleeping in a bad position. This post on ComfyComfy couldn’t have explained things better, it is recommended for side sleepers to have 3 pieces of pillows:
- A tall pillow to support the head, to keep the neck straight. So that you don’t wake up with headaches every morning.
- A “teddy bear” to support the chest area. Reduce stress on the upper arm and shoulders.
- Lastly, a bolster between the legs to support and keep the lower body straight.
So here goes, a bolster pillow has actual orthopedic benefits – Some side sleepers even use a “big and long bolster pillow” to support both the chest and lower body at once.
2) AS A YOGA WORKOUT PROP
Most people should have already heard of the yoga mat, but how many actually know of the other Yoga props? Yoga straps, blocks, and bolsters. Yep, the bolster does not just belong to the bed, and it has actual uses in the practice of Yoga.
For beginners, a bolster pillow can be used to further help stabilize the body, and reduce the difficulty of some of the tricky poses. For the advanced yogi, bolsters can be used to alter the poses, add more stretch where required.
3) USED AS A BODY PILLOW
For people who have never heard of a body pillow before (not going to judge), it is simply a “big and long pillow” that spans the height of a person. Also, before some people decide to call this pillow “ridiculous” and even “useless” – There is science behind it, and it is invented for good reasons.
In a nutshell, body pillows offer a lot of support for the entire body and improve spinal alignment; Sleeping in a good position means less neck, shoulder, and back pains. Now, bolster pillows may not be “as good as a full-sized body pillow”, but they make good alternatives and are perfect for side sleepers and pregnant women nonetheless.
4) USING BOLSTERS AS EXTRA SUPPORT & HEIGHT BOOSTERS
Sometimes, we just want to enjoy a lazy afternoon in bed. Read a book, browse through a magazine, play on the phone, or do some simple work on the laptop. But a flat pillow is not going to be the most comfortable to lean back on, in fact, quite strenuous for long periods of time.
So here comes the bolster pillow to the rescue. Prop it behind the pillow to boost the height, change the inclination, and have something nicer to lean back on. Complete that with a cup of tea and enjoy.
5) PROTECTING TODDLERS IN BED
Have a little one who tosses and turns around in bed? Perhaps an “inherited trait” from someone? For the overgrown babies, a bed frame bump in the middle of the night will probably end uneventfully with just a simple curse (or after a couple of curses).
But for the little ones, that will be the infamous “midnight cry of death”. Resulting in awakened parents, siblings, and angry neighbors knocking on the door. To prevent that tragedy, we can pad the bed with bolsters.
P.S. Bolsters and pillows are not recommended for babies less than 1 year old though. In the US alone, there are over 4000 infant deaths a year that results from accidental suffocating – fda.gov
6) USED AS A DECORATIVE PIECE
Finally, Captain Obvious to the rescue. Some bolster pillows are just stunningly beautiful, they add to the look of both contemporary design and ethnic interiors – Tasteful individuals use bolsters to spice up their interior space, nothing wrong with that.
THE END – BOLSTERS ARE NOT USELESS…
By now, you should be well aware that bolsters are not only decorative and they are great for orthopedics purposes too. I am also sure there are many other uses for bolster pillows – They are most definitely not that “you are grown up now, you don’t need bolsters” as some moms say.
Thank you for reading, and we have come to the end of this short guide. I hope it has helped to answer your doubts. Good luck and have better nights of sleep!