What is Floatation Therapy
Floating allows you to enter a state of deep mental and physical relaxation. The water in each float tank is about 10 inches deep and saturated with 850-1000 pounds of pharmaceutical grade Epsom salt creating an anti-gravity environment. The temperature of the water is heated to the same temperature as the surface of your skin, resulting in the sensory loss of the physical boundary between the water and your skin. This experience is designed to give your mind and body a state of blissful rest.
Benefits range from pain relief and stress reduction to improved focus and mental clarity, Floating has attracted the interest of athletes, artists, meditators, and military personnel as a healthy, drug-free way to feel and be their very best. Click here to learn more about the benefits of floating.
The history of Floatation-REST (Reduced Environmental Stimulation Therapy) dates back to the 1950’s when Drs. Jay Shurley and John Lilly at the National Institute of Mental Health became interested in understanding how the human brain would respond to an environment devoid of external sensory input. The float environment systematically minimizes external sensory input to the nervous system including signals from visual, auditory, olfactory, gustatory, thermal, tactile, vestibular, gravitational and proprioceptive channels. Since its discovery, there have been a number of publications exploring the potential therapeutic benefits of floating. The most consistent observation to date has been significant reductions in levels of subjective stress and increases in relaxation as measured from pre- to post-float. Concomitant with these subjective findings, floating has also been reported to decrease blood pressure, heart rate, and cortisol levels. A meta-analysis published in 2005 found a large overall effect size for stress reduction, with most past float studies focused on healthy populations.
Clinical research investigating Floatation-REST, although limited, has reported largely beneficial effects across a range of different stress- and pain-related conditions, including: hypertension, chronic tension headaches, chronic muscle tension pain in the back and neck, and stress-related pain with burnout depression. There have also been several studies focused on individuals with clinical anxiety, including generalized anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anorexia nervosa, panic disorder, agoraphobia, and social anxiety disorder, with many of these patients also presenting with comorbid major depressive disorder. The evidence published thus far suggests that Floatation-REST is a safe technique for rapidly reducing levels of stress, pain, and anxiety. Clinical trials are currently underway in America, Germany, and Sweden investigating the long-term impact of floating in patients with anxiety disorders, anorexia nervosa, chronic pain, fibromyalgia, and insomnia.
Visit Float Research Collective to learn about the Science of Floating.