“My friend said, “You have to get one of these mattresses!” So I went to his house and lay on his bed. I was sold straight away.”
We caught up with Ulster and Ireland’s Dan Tuohy to talk about rugby, sleep and the piece of metal that holds his arm in place.
Hi Dan, what made you decide to become a rugby player?
The social aspect was what attracted me to rugby. I had a lot of friends that played and they persuaded me to join the team on the weekend and it just went from there.
If you had to describe your rugby career in three words, what would they be?
Tough. Enjoyable. Unfinished.
How would your rugby teammates describe you?
Hopefully they would talk about me in terms of being honest and loyal.
What would you class as your proudest moment – either in sport or outside it?
My proudest moment off the pitch was the birth of my son. In sport, the European Cup final with Ulster and my first cap for Ireland would be the highlights.
If you weren’t playing rugby, what job do you think you would be doing?
When in school, I always wanted to be a physical education teacher. I just loved playing every different sport.
What does your typical fitness regime involve?
During match weeks, there are two to three weights sessions a week and three pitch sessions of about an hour long. Typically we’d be covering 2-3km a session and everything builds towards the match at the weekend.
Can you tell us what are you looking forward to in the next 12 months and your hopes for Ulster?
Like any other sportsperson, I always want to stay fit and healthy, be able to perform at my best and win a trophy.
Mammoth mattresses are known for their health benefits, particularly for people recovering from injury or taking preventive steps to maintain condition. Have you suffered any injuries during your career?
Like most rugby players, injuries have played a part in my career. Breaking my arm twice was tough and painful. It was very tough to sleep with at the start as I had to sleep with my arm on my chest, but the Mammoth mattress was a great help.
Do any of your past injuries still hinder you today?
There are no injuries hindering me now but I still have metal in my arm, which will remain there for the foreseeable future.
Would you consider rest time and recovery an important part of your training?
Crucial. It is one of the main components of being able to perform at your best.
Ideally, how many hours of sleep do you aim for a night? Do you usually reach your target?
Eight is pretty much a must and I usually achieve that.
What impact does it have on you if you feel you’ve not had a good night’s sleep?
I feel sluggish and just a little stiffer in the morning. Those extra few hours allow you to really recover the most.
What kind of sleeper are you? Perhaps a light and restless sleeper or do you sleep like a log, as the saying goes?
Most of the time, I sleep like a log. There is also the odd occasion I will wake up if I have too many things going on in my head, but I tend to do all my organising for the next day to ensure I don’t have loads of things on my mind going to bed.
With touring a lot, what’s a must have to ensure a good night’s sleep away from home?
There is a key combination: good pillows, the right room temperature and a good room-mate.
Do you have an optimum environment to sleep in?
It depends. For me, it’s cool and clean in the summer and warm and cosy when you get single digit temperatures.
What is your typical bedtime routine? Do you like to relax in bed with a DVD? Read a book or a magazine? Or is it straight to bed and lights out after you’ve brushed your teeth?
I’m big into my TV series box sets, so the hour before I sleep is normally spent catching up on an episode or two.
How did you find out about Mammoth mattresses?
I found out both through IRUPA (Irish Rugby Union Players’ Association) and a recommendation from a fellow pro.
What attracted you to Mammoth in the first place?
My friend said, “You have to get one of these mattresses!” So I went to his house and lay on his bed. I was sold straight away.
If you could have a (purely platonic) late night chat with anyone, dead or alive, who would be worth losing sleep over – and why?
Bill Shankly, because I’m a massive Liverpool fan. He was so ahead of his time; I would just enjoy listening to his stories and how he built the club into one of the biggest in the world.
Dan Tuohy bought his Mammoth Performance mattress from Dreams Boucher Road in Belfast.