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From John Lennon to Elle MacPherson, salt floats have been loved by celebrities for decades. And now, they’ve hit the mainstream. From spiritual awakenings to mental detoxes, salt floats have all kinds of benefits. We admit they do sound a little out there, which is why we’ve delved a little deeper to uncover just what it is that makes salt floats so special.
Is it just a glorified bath? Or something more?
Floatation therapy: 101
Also known as isolation therapy or sensory deprivation therapy, floatation therapy sees you spend an hour or more floating peacefully on a bed of water infused with an Epsom salt solution. You’re usually encased within a floatation tank, though sometimes there will be an entire float room dedicated to the experience.
When it comes to the salts, we’re not just talking a sprinkle or two. There are roughly 385 kilograms of Epsom salt in an average sized float tank, which makes it a pretty unique experience. The salts are pivotal to the floating effect that creates buoyancy that keeps you suspended in the water.
To intensify the experience all distractions are removed, including light and visual stimuli. Touch is also dulled as the water is kept the same temperature as your skin. It sounds a little claustrophobic, but you’ll quickly get used to it.
Physically, the effect of gravity on your bones, joints and muscles is completely removed. This makes floating incredibly therapeutic, especially if you suffer from arthritis, fibromyalgia, back and neck pain, inflammation or tendonitis. Basically, all pressure is lifted which feels amazing. This actively improves your circulation and empowers your body with the freedom to rejuvenate and heal itself.
Floating is also shown to have a remarkable cognitive impact, with sensory deprivation slowing down the brain waves until they plateau in the theta state, which is generally only achieved during deep meditation or just before falling asleep. This triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural opiates which spark vivid imagery, creativity, a sense of clarity, sudden insights and soaring sensations of happiness. What’s not to like about that?
Here are a few more reasons to give it a go:
- Sensory deprivation actively lowers stress levels
- Your blood pressure and heart rate slow right down
- Feelings of anxiety and depression are dulled
- Helps to reduce chronic fatigue caused by insomnia and jet lag
- Sparks creativity
- Accelerates mental clarity
- Shown to deepen and enhance meditation practices
- An effective way to soothe chronic pain
- Decreases muscular tension caused by daily stress
- Actively improves circulation and lowers blood pressure
- Can accelerate the post-surgery healing process
- Shown to strengthen the immune system
With so many benefits on offer, floating is a wonderful way to nurture your mind, body and spirit. Of course, it’s not for everyone but we’re firm believers in giving everything a go at least once, especially when the benefits could be so incredible.
Have you tried floating? We’d love to hear about your experiences so go ahead and share in the comments box below!