Eight nurses have been studied during rest days and three successive night shifts. Measurements of wrist activity have been made and used to assess the extent to which the pattern of daily activity changes between control (rest) days and days involving night work. One analysis considered wrist activity during time spent in bed; this appears to decrease in parallel with the amount of time in bed that is lost during night work but, when this effect is corrected for, there is greater activity during time spent in bed in the daytime compared with control days (when time in bed is during the night). The dichotomy of activity (between lower values during time spent in bed and higher values when out of bed) also decreases if time in bed is during the daytime while on night shifts. These changes in the amount of wrist activity and the dichotomy between activity in and out of bed are related to the changed quality and quantity of sleep that has been measured by self-report questionnaires and the sleep EEG. It is concluded that results from wrist actimetry can provide valuable information regarding the process of adjustment to night work, and that its convenience (to subject and experimenter), coupled with the new analytical approaches described here, make it a viable method for field studies.