Once upon a time feathers were used in mattresses as well as other natural cushioning materials like horse hair and straw. Any one who has ever slept in a feather bed knows the problem of waking up and hardly being able to walk the next day due to lack of proper support for your back. That’s because the human body requires that the hips and shoulders be kept at the same level or pressure is placed on the lower back.
The average human carries 60% of their body weight in the lower torso are around their hips. When lying down to sleep, gravity wants to pull this portion of the body deeper into the sleep surface. That’s why a firm surface or springs are needed to push the hips back up into proper alignment with the shoulders. When this doesn’t happen the lower back area “sags” creating a hammocking effect. The next thing we know we have a weak lower back that is prone to aches and pain and eventually giving out.
Its too bad that feathers don’t work better. They’re natural and readily available, but the problems they have in providing support, the way they wear out as they are used, and their overall cleanliness makes them obsolete after modern mattress materials were invented.