Why Do Japanese Use Bed Rolls?

Bed rolls have been used in Japan for centuries, and are an integral part of the traditional Japanese home. They are made from various materials such as cotton, linen and silk, and come in a variety of sizes and colors. Bed rolls provide convenience, comfort and portability for the user, allowing for flexible sleeping arrangements.

This article examines the history of bed rolls in Japan, their advantages and disadvantages, and how they can be incorporated into your home. The use of bed rolls in Japan has its roots in the Edo period of 1603 to 1868, when the ruling samurai class adopted them as a way to rest and relax.

Since then, they have become a popular sleeping option for the Japanese, as they offer the flexibility of portability and comfort. Bed rolls are also an integral part of the Japanese home, and are used as an additional sleeping option for guests, or when space is limited.

This article will explore the history of bed rolls, their advantages and disadvantages, and how to incorporate them into your home.

History of Bed Rolls

The practice of utilizing bed rolls has a long history, dating back centuries.

Initially, traditional uses of bed rolls in Japan were largely for ceremonial purposes, as they commonly featured in the Noh theatre of the 14th century.

In addition, bed rolls were used to signify the social status of a person; their size and quality were indicative of the wealth and power of the individual who owned it.

Moreover, bed rolls were considered a form of artistic expression; the colourful and intricate designs were a reflection of the highly developed aesthetic of Japanese culture.

Even today, bed rolls remain an important part of the cultural context of Japan, often being used in a variety of ceremonies and events.

Comfort and convenience, however, are also important factors to consider when exploring why Japanese people use bed rolls.

Comfort and Convenience

Given the comfort and convenience afforded by sleeping on a bed roll, it is no surprise that many have adopted the practice.

While there are certainly cultural differences between the traditional use of bed rolls and modern trends, the fact remains that bed rolls are often preferred for their comfort and convenience.

They are lightweight and easy to transport, making them perfect for camping trips or for taking on vacation.

They are also easy to set up and take down, a definite advantage for those who must move frequently.

Additionally, they are much more comfortable than sleeping on the ground, providing more cushioning and warmth.

Furthermore, bed rolls are often less expensive than a traditional bed, making them a more cost-effective option.

All of these factors make it easy to see why bed rolls are so popular, no matter where they are used.

Advantages of Bed Rolls

With their portability, affordability, and comfort, bed rolls offer a range of advantages to those who choose them as a sleeping option.

Safety benefits are a key advantage, as they can be easily transported and stored away, providing a secure sleeping option.

Additionally, bed rolls are ideal for space saving, as they are lightweight and can be quickly and easily packed away when not being used.

Furthermore, bed rolls provide a comfortable option for those who may have allergies or sensitivities to certain materials used in standard mattresses.

In sum, bed rolls provide a variety of safety, space saving, and comfort benefits that make them a desirable sleeping option for many.

Disadvantages of Bed Rolls

Despite their many advantages, such as lightweight portability and space saving design, bed rolls can also present certain disadvantages.

In particular, they may not provide the support necessary for those with back pain issues; in fact, 75% of Americans experience low back pain at some point in their lives.

As such, it is important to consider the potential drawbacks of a bed roll before incorporating it into one’s home.

Incorporating Bed Rolls into Your Home

Incorporating a bed roll into one’s home can be a great way to save space and increase portability, but it is important to consider the potential drawbacks before making the decision.

Bed rolls are a space-saving and multi-purpose solution for those looking to reduce clutter and increase flexibility. They provide a comfortable and supportive sleeping surface while also allowing for easy transportation.

However, bed rolls may be too thin to provide adequate comfort and support for those with chronic back or neck pain, and can often be difficult to set up and store. Additionally, bed rolls can be bulky and difficult to transport, making them less ideal for those who need to move them frequently.

It is important to consider these potential drawbacks before deciding to incorporate bed rolls into one’s home.


Bed rolls have long been a part of Japan’s culture, providing comfort and convenience to those who use them.

Though bed rolls may not be the most conventional form of sleeping, they offer many advantages, such as the ability to quickly and easily move them around and the ability to stack them up to create extra space.

However, they also have some disadvantages, such as the fact that they do not provide the same level of support and comfort as a traditional mattress.

Despite these drawbacks, bed rolls can be a great way to add a unique touch to your home and can be a refreshing way to get a good night’s sleep.

As the saying goes, “a change is as good as a rest,” and incorporating bed rolls into your home can bring an invigorating sense of renewal and revitalization.