By now, we all know that sleep is important. Almost 100 years of sleep research tells us that it affects everything from our mood to our work performance to our mental and physical health. Studies show that you’re 300% more likely to catch a common cold, 400% more likely to lose your train of thought and 50% more likely to be clinically anxious if you’re getting too little sleep.
It’s not all doom and gloom, though. Sleep research has also found that we can harness the power of sleep to feel our best the next day. But it’s not through weighted blankets or REM tracking. It’s by focusing on the things that actually make a difference: sleep debt and circadian rhythm.
Startup founders Jeff Kahn and Leon Sasson know this. They’re leaders in the world of sleep science and the founders of RISE, an app that helps you track and improve on these two sleep metrics.
By paying back sleep debt—which you build up when you don’t get enough sleep relative to your unique sleep need—and scheduling your day to fit your circadian rhythm—your natural cycle of peaks and dips in energy—you can begin to feel and perform your best.
“While there are many ways to reach your potential, the one truth is that our sleep is the foundation of our well-being. Without it, there's no way to be anywhere close to your best self,” said Jeff Kahn, CEO and Co-Founder of RISE.
First the NBA and NFL, then Fortune 200 Companies
Jeff and Leon first learned about the importance of sleep debt and circadian rhythms while working in apprenticeships in the field. They published their research in an academic paper, and this soon caught the eye of sports organizations and teams who were looking to get a competitive edge on the field. The pair began working with players, and soon started helping others, too.
By helping people pay back sleep debt and live in sync with their circadian rhythm, RISE has helped elite athletes and Fortune 200 and 500 companies achieve everything from two Super Bowl wins, an 85% increase in productivity, and a 14% revenue increase.
But the company goes beyond businesses and sports teams. It officially launched the RISE app to consumers in mid-2020 to help people achieve similar results. With more than 1 million users already, it’s taking over the world, one good night’s sleep for one better day at a time. Here’s how the app is quickly transforming how people sleep and optimize their energy the next day.
RISE is Backed by Real-Life Studies with Big Results
The company started out by helping teams, both in the sports world and the business world, optimize their sleep for improved performance. Across the company’s roster of sports clients, Rise found 97% of players slept an extra 60 minutes or more every night. This resulted in a 70% decrease in injury rates and 8% faster reaction times.
One soccer team, Chicago Fire, worked with RISE for about four months. The results? Players reported increased alertness, attention and simply playing better during games.
University of Tennessee football players learned how to sleep a full 9 hours a night and reported having more energy during the day. And the Chicago Bulls even changed their practice times to allow players to get an extra half hour of sleep per night. It might not sound like much, but RISE showed them the impact this extra sleep has on their performance.
In an interview with Crunchbase News, CEO Jeff Kahn explained what happened when his sleep research was picked up by sports organizations:
“The elite sports world heard about this, and there I was, finishing graduate school and working with the New England Patriots and the Dallas Cowboys. I would get phone calls from Bill Belichik to talk about how the team’s trends were for the week. It was crazy that we had convinced college and professional athletes to do something, which is get more sleep amongst everything else they could be doing.”
Outside of the sports world, RISE has helped sales teams improve their performance, too, by helping them generate more revenue.
A Fortune 200 company ran a five-month study where some of its sales team used RISE. Of those that did, 95% of them said it made them feel more productive at work. What’s more, sellers who reduced their sleep debt increased the number of outbound calls they made by 50%. This led users to make an average of 14% more monthly revenue compared to colleagues who weren’t using RISE, with some even making 30% more.
Shorter studies were run, too. Staffing company ManpowerGroup tried the app for 30 days. In just one month, 86% felt that RISE helped them schedule their work and rest to better suit their circadian rhythm, 75% said it made them better at coping with stress, and 86% said it made them more productive and effective at work.
VCs Know RISE is the Next Big Thing in Health Tech
RISE has raised $15.5 million in funding and is backed by leading investors, some of whom also invested in Fitbit, Peloton and Facebook. Firms like Goodwater Capital, True Ventures, Freestyle Capital and High Alpha are banking on what the Rise Science team already knows, and what more users are finding out each day: that RISE is the next big thing in health tech.
Why do they believe RISE is the next big thing? Because the app isn’t just helping people feel and perform better through improved sleep, it’s disrupting the entire sleep app space altogether.
It’s founded by published sleep researchers who use science-backed methods to help people live in sync with their circadian rhythm. And instead of giving users cluttered sleep data that doesn't really impact mood or performance, it focuses on what does—sleep debt. By guiding users to improve this key metric, RISE helps users feel the difference a good night's sleep can make.
What’s more, the app isn’t just making big claims and empty promises like other apps. It’s backed up by real-life studies and is making decades of sleep science accessible for anyone to benefit from.
Here’s what one investor had to say about the company:
“Rise Science has already proved its effectiveness with professional athletes and Fortune 500 sales teams, and now its proprietary intel is available as an all-in-one lifestyle tool that incorporates the scientific truths behind sleep, wellness, energy and performance,” said Chi-Hua Chien, Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Goodwater Capital.
RISE Uses Smart Technology to Give Users Personalized Advice
Sleep apps aren’t new. But they often focus on helping people get to sleep, instead of maximizing sleep for the next day’s energy levels. RISE not only uses smart technology to track sleep debt, it gives users personalized advice on what they need to do to pay it back.
How does the app work? First, the app pulls historical data from your phone to work out how much sleep you need based on your past sleep times. Next, it tracks sleep and wake up times using phone behavior—like when you touch your phone first and last thing—and calculates your sleep debt.
It even uses your latitude and local weather to work out how much light you’re getting and then, with your sleep times, predicts your circadian rhythm.
Users don’t even have to use wearables like an Apple Watch or Oura Ring, although if they have one, RISE can use that data, too.
As well as more accurate data on how much sleep you should be getting—and catching up on—the app gives users tailor-made advice to follow during the day based on their chronotype—or whether they’re more of an early bird, night owl or somewhere in between.
For example, users can get notifications for when in the day they should do their most demanding tasks, workout, have their final coffee or wind-down for the night. All of this helps users sleep better and have more energy day after day.
RISE Launched Mid-2020 to Tackle Sleep Health and Energy Management During the Pandemic
After helping sports teams, like those in the NFL, MLB and NBA, plus Fortune 200 and 500 companies, RISE officially launched to individual users in mid-2020—right when the COVID-19 pandemic was sweeping around the world.
As it turned out, people were desperate for something that could actually improve their sleep and boost their energy levels. Immediately after launching, the app became one of the fastest growing consumer apps out there, and it was downloaded 20,000 to 30,000 times per week.
Now RISE is trusted by more than 1 million users who are using the app to dramatically improve their sleep to get the most of their days. In fact, 80% feel better within just five days of using the app.
Here’s what a few users had to say about the app:
“I use [RISE] to ensure I feel rested and calm in the morning, which puts me in a good mindset to tackle the rest of my day, even the really challenging ones.” — one salesperson from ManpowerGroup.
“A game changer for sure in this age of overwork and over commitment” — 5-star review (May 2021)
“Changed my life. As an entrepreneur, the energy I’ve gained from this has improved my business 4 fold.” — 5-star review (May, 2021)
RISE is Now Helping Millions Feel Better in Days
New apps are released every day, but not many of them are backed by science and studies that promise real results. Become an early adopter and download RISE to start improving your sleep and energy in a matter of days.
Learn more about Rise for sales teams.
RISE makes it easy to improve your sleep and daily energy to reach your potential