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open coil vs pocket sprung mattresses – definitive guide

choosing the right mattress

If you’re struggling to choose a mattress and wondering what’s the difference between open coil, continuous coil and pocket sprung then this is the guide for you. 

Mattress bi-section

Mattresses are typically made of three main layers - the sleep surface on top, the comfort layer, and the support system which provides the desired firmness and support for your back. Support systems can be made of foam, fibres, or more traditionally a spring unit. 

In this guide we break down the differences between the main types of mattress springs being sold today.

types of mattress springs

There are 3 main types of mattress spring systems. Generally known as Open coil, Continuous spring, and Pocket spring. The Silentnight versions of these are Bonnell sprung, Miracoil® , and Mirapocket® .

Bonnell / Open Coil

Bonnell / Open Coil

Open coil is a more traditional mattress spring type in which springs are arranged in rows, and connected to each other. An outer rod is used to add strength to the perimeter of the mattress. Open coil mattresses often don’t typically feature firmness zones for spinal alignment, and aren’t as good at reducing partner disturbance or roll together. Bonnell springs use the same principle, using a helix of wire to join the springs together.

Miracoil® / Continuous spring

Miracoil® / Continuous spring

Made from a single continuous stretch of wire, knitted together into interwoven springs. Continuous spring mattresses generally use a lighter gauge of wire, and have many more springs, allowing for greater support. Miracoil® reduces the typical roll together and partner disturbance by weaving the springs from head to toe, allowing the springs to move more independently of those your partner is lying on. Miracoil mattresses are zoned with areas of optimised firmness for the hips, upper and lower body areas, for enhanced spinal alignment and support.

Mirapocket® / Pocket sprung

Mirapocket® / Pocket sprung

Pocket spring mattresses are made with individual springs, each encased in its own fabric pocket to hold the spring in place. Each pocket is then stitched together keeping the springs in the right place, but allowing for individual movement of the spring. Because each pocket spring can move independently of its neighbours, pocket springs greatly reduce partner disturbance and eliminate roll together while also allowing each spring to adapt to your body’s shape. Mirapocket® mattresses have zoned springs for further enhancement to spinal alignment and support, and use cylindrical springs rather than hour glass shaped for more stable support even to the edge of the mattress.

what is the difference between open-coil and pocket-sprung?

Both open coil and pocket sprung mattresses have individual springs, however the difference is in the way the springs are connected. In an open coil mattress, the springs are connected top and bottom by wire causing the entire mattress surface to react to movement. Pocket springs are also individual springs, but are not directly connected together. Each spring sits in its own fabric pocket and is free to move independently. This makes pocket spring systems quieter, and more ideal for couples.

The simplicity of a traditional open coil support system makes open coil ideal for entry level mattresses, and their lack of zoning is ideal for growing children. The cost and complexity of pocket sprung systems is matched by the benefits making pocket springs perfect for high performance mattresses. 

how many springs should a good mattress have?

With many mattress manufacturers battling out for bragging rights over the highest spring counts it is often assumed that more springs often means better support. 

While it is true that more springs can mean more tailored support, the types of springs, and how they are made is often more important. Features like zoning and pocket springs improve each spring’s effectiveness at giving a supportive night’s sleep. 

Some mattresses achieve very high spring counts by using mini springs as a comfort layer. These springs provide added comfort, but add very little to the supportive nature of the mattress so should be seen as a luxury feature.

rolled sprung mattresses?

With the latest innovation from Silentnight, we’re now able to provide some pocket sprung mattresses compressed and rolled for convenient delivery and transport to your bedroom. These mattresses will need some time to return to their full size once unpacked, but will be no different to a flat delivered mattress once allowed to rest. This makes even more mattresses available to customers who may struggle to bring a full sized flat mattress to the room of their choice.