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Why Are Futons So Low? (Reasons Explained!)

When it comes down to coziness, it’s quite sure that you would prefer futons over anything. However, while sinking into it you might have felt these mattresses are lower than regular ones. And this might have raised a question in your mind that why are futons so low. 

Why Are Futons So Low?

Futon mattresses are so low to the floor because initially they were originated in Japan and influenced by Japanese futons. As typical Japanese futons were designed to be put on the floor directly for sleeping purposes, so modern futons are also made maintaining the authenticity and Japanese root.

Futon mattresses are an invention of Japanese people. Since ancient times, the Japanese people have been using futons. A futon is a type of a mattress placed on tatami mats on the ground for sleeping purposes. Since these mattresses are supposed to be placed on the floor, they are low to the floor. 

So to retain the authenticity and Japanese root of futons, modern-day futons are also made low to the floor. Also, modern-day futons are totally influenced by authentic Japanese futon design. 

5 Reasons Why Futons Are Low?

Perhaps you haven’t been convinced yet with the justification regarding why futons are so low. Well, to convince you here are 5 good reasons that will explain the reasons in detail from the ancient time to modern-day futons being low. 

Good For Back 

Japanese people are always health-conscious and they knew sleeping on a firm bed that is low to the floor will be good for their back.  Because sleeping close to the floor allows the backbone to stay aligned in a neutral position. So they made the futons low. 

To Avoid Summer Hot And Humidity 

Japan in summer is really hot and sometimes humid too. So they considered making futons low. Because sleeping on futons over the tatami mats is more comfortable and doesn’t trap heat like western thick mattresses. Also, the floor’s surface is relatively colder so sleeping on low to the floor is relaxing.

Saves Up Space

Low to the ground means the mattress can not be too thick. Therefore, it can be rolled up easily and store away. That means during the daytime it saves up space that can be used for other activities. So Japanese people made futons low. 


As said before, low to a ground futon means lighter in weight. So, futons can be taken outside in the sunlight to disinfect them and to terminate any kinds of germs or bacteria. Moreover, these are easier to beat the dust out of it. So it’s another reason why futons are low.

To Maintain Authenticity 

Modern-day futon mattresses are influenced by authentic Japanese futons. Therefore, a designer named William Brouwer designed futon sofas as low to the floor to conserve the Japanese roots. So they are low. 

How To Make A Futon Sit Higher? 

If you don’t like to sit/sleep on a low futon and want to make the sit higher, then 5 very effective futon sit-raising solutions have been suggested below for you. 

Furniture Raisers 

The easiest and widely used method is using furniture raisers to make futons sit higher. If you want to raise your futons height by a couple of inches then you can use 2-5 inches furniture raisers. 

This one is a great way to raise without even removing existing frame legs. Furniture raisers just slot right in. But remember it’s only for non-wheeled futon frame legs. 

Add Mattress Topper/feather bed/ Layer Comforters 

Another solution is just to add an extra mattress topper, feather bed, or layer 2/3 comforters over your futon. It will eventually raise the sitting height of futons. 


If you frequently move your futon then using a caster would be a good solution for you. As casters have a mobility quality and they are over 5 inches in height. Therefore, you can use a caster that suits your furniture and use it to raise the futon sit higher. 

New Frame Legs 

Numerous futon frame legs simply screw in. So you can exchange your sofa legs as an easy solution. You can get these frame legs from manufactures separately or can customize them as per your desired height.

Raised Platform 

The other method of raising a futon sit is using a raised platform. Place it over a raised place in your home. For instance, you can place it the center of your living room where you would usually place your sofa-bed. 

How Do You Fix A Sagging Futon?

Generally, futons don’t sag however, if your futon is sagging you can follow this step-by-step guide to fix the sagging futon. 

Add A Board Or Plywood 

The first step you should take to fix a sagging futon is to add a board or plywood underneath your futon. Because futon frames are made of metal slats and metal can cause sagging of futons. So measure the frame and get or cut your own plywood to provide support underneath futons. 

Air Out Your Futon

After that clean and air out your futon as it will help the mattress to freshen up and fluff up the futon’s stuffing. All you need to do is beat the surface many times and leave it under sunshine for a few hours. 

Add An Extra Layer Of Padding 

The next step is adding an extra layer of padding with pillows or foam. These will support the structure of your futon. Also, will spread the weight equally and this will be an effective remedy for sagging futons. 

Flip And Rotate 

Once you are done adding extra layers of padding, the next up is to flip and rotate it before placing back. If you sit regularly in the same spot, it is normal that your futon will start sagging out. So flipping and rotating will help it to stay firm by redistributing the stuffing inside. 

If you have a traditional Japanese futon(Shikibuton) and it is also sagging, then you can squeeze/shake your futon to adjust and redistribute the cotton fillings inside. Or beat it and hang it under sunlight. 

Why Futons Are Better?

Futons are better for numerous reasons, but the main one is it saves up space that can be used for other purposes. And due to its lightweight, it is easy to clean and maintain a futon. 

Another main reason is sleeping on a futon is comparatively healthier than sleeping on a soft cloudy mattress. As futons are firm enough they will allow the back spine to stay aligned throughout the night rest. And regular sleeping lessens back pain gradually. 

The other significant reason is, futons are relatively more practical for modern life as it’s foldable, so you can fold them into a bed or a sofa, whatever you want. So it serves a double purpose and saves up both money and space.  

Is It Bad To Sleep On A Futon Every Night?

Futons are designed with the purpose of sleeping in them every night so it’s not bad to sleep on a futon every night. In fact, it’s better for health.

Research has proven that sleeping on a futon regularly at night lessens back pain gradually. Because futons have a firm surface that supports the back muscles uniformly and keeps the backbone aligned throughout the night. 

However, elderly people are absolutely not suggested to sleep in futons during any time of the day as it may cause them more pain. 

But remember that, futons don’t claim that they can cure your back pain fully if you sleep every night in them.

Read more, Are futons good or bad for your back?

Why Do The Japanese Sleep On Futons?

Japanese people are sleeping in futons because futons have a firm surface and are placed on the floor over a tatami mat, they become more comfortable to sleep on.

Also, it supports the back muscles and backbone to stay aligned so Japanese people prefer sleeping in futons.

The other reason is earthquakes, Japan faces earthquakes more frequently so they made futons that are lightweight and won’t block the exits during an earthquake time. 

Another reason is, futons save up spaces. Therefore, the Japanese use futons so that they can roll them up and store them during the daytime and use the room for other activities.

Are Japanese Futons Bad For Your Back?

Japanese futons are made of 100% organic cotton and handmade that features the exact amount of thickness and firmness which is better for your back. 

Japanese people believed, our body will remain healthy if they rest on a firm surface as sleeping regularly on firm surfaces like futons provide support to the back muscles uniformly. And keep the back spine aligned, also reduce any back pains.

Besides, it gives a natural turn and twist to the body. Even research also supported all these facts, therefore, Japanese futons are absolutely not bad for your back unless you are an elderly person. 

Is There Such A Thing As A Comfortable Futon?

There are thousands of comfortable futons, and here are the top 5 comfy futon names for you given below.

  1. Novogratz Tallulah Futon
  2. Sunrise Coast Geneva Futon
  3. Nirvana Stanford Futon
  4. Milemont Futon 
  5. DHP Ivana Tufted Futon 

Futons were made low since ancient Japan time, even in the modern-day, they are designed low to the floor to maintain its root.

Moreover, low-to-the-ground futons serve various beneficial purposes and people are enjoying all these advantages. Therefore, even in the future futons will remain low to the floor.