The benefits of floating range from therapy to stress relief:
- Stress relief
- Reduces pain associated with arthritis, fibromyalgia and more
- Removes lactic acid from the muscles which speeds up the healing process
- Lowers blood pressure and slows down the heart rate
One hour of floating is equivalent to four hours of REM sleep. If you have a busy lifestyle and need a break, nothing beats floating. Experience a whole new level of relaxation by reducing external stimuli to a bare minimum.
Perceived stress can be correlated with increased levels of cortisol and in flotation therapy there is a natural tendency for cortisol to be reduced. For this reason, flotation therapy is one of the few noninvasive techniques available to manage stress when it is a factor in reducing a person’s ability to cope with normal life. Flotation therapy is a fast technique in this respect. This compares well with other management techniques such as long vacations.
There are some similarities with the age old “long hot bath”. However, the main differences are that in floatation all sensory impressions are absent, temperature is maintained at the correct level and the bath is large enough to float without touching the sides of the float unit. These factors allow the individual to achieve much deeper level of relaxation, and therapeutic benefit, than would otherwise be possible.
A therapeutic session typically lasts between an hour to an hour and a half. For the first forty minutes, it is reportedly possible to experience itching in various parts of the body (a phenomenon also reported to be common during the early stages of meditation). The last twenty minutes often end with a transition from beta or alpha brainwaves to theta, which typically occurs briefly before sleep and again at waking. In a float tank, the theta state can last indefinitely without the subject losing consciousness. Many use the extended theta state as a tool for enhanced creativity and problem solving or for super learning. The more often the tank is used the longer the theta period becomes.
The relaxed state involves lowered blood pressure and maximum blood flow. Floating can be passive or active, depending on the purpose. For relaxation, one simply floats and ‘clears the mind.’ Active floating has many different techniques. One may perform meditation, mantras, self-hypnosis, utilize educational programs, etc. The idea of active floating is that, when the body is relaxed, the mind becomes highly suggestible and any action taken during these states will enter the information into the sub-conscious. Flotation therapy may be used to complement other body work and healing methods.
We use Epsom salt, (magnesium sulfate), in high concentration so that the relative density of the solution assists in floating… Particularly making the head buoyant so that the nose and mouth are well out of the water for breathing.
It has recently been discovered that there is a secondary effect which is important to flotation therapy. Magnesium is absorbed through the skin due to the skins ability to naturally absorb. This tends to correct magnesium deficiency.
Magnesium is absorbed from the diet, but in many areas of the world over-cropping without adequate replacement of magnesium makes the normal diet low in magnesium. The body naturally optimizes the levels of magnesium, so there is no overload effect from floating in the salts for extended periods.