How and why flotation therapy works. Three key components - epsom salt, sensory deprivation & gravity reduction - work together to create the unparalleled results and benefits of flotation therapy.
The story of Epsom salt is an old one, as is the unspoken power of water.
It is well known that we are mostly made of water, our brain is 80% water; point being, water is part of who we are, how we survive and how we heal. Epsom salt is also no regular salt. It is the culmination of two of the most important minerals in our body, and sadly amongst the most deficient - Magnesium and Sulfur.
Magnesium per current studies, is present in 3,751 protein binding sites in our body as well as in 300 different enzymes.
Its responsibilities include creating energy molecules, forming bones and teeth, relaxing blood vessels, regulating blood pressure, helping prevent cardiac arrest, heart attack and stroke, helping the heart muscles, bowel functions, regulating blood sugar levels. Thus far, over 100 health benefits have been ascribed to magnesium, amongst them being therapeutic benefits for Fibromyalgia, Atrial Fibrillation, Type 2 Diabetes, Premenstrual Syndrome, Cardiovascular Disease, Migraine, Aging, Antioxidant Synthesis, Arthritis, Osteoporoses, Asthma, Migraines, Peptic Ulcers, Digestion Problems. A few key points to note include: DNA synthesis is dependant on the rate of protein sysnthesis which is regulated by the concentration of intracellular ionic magnesium. As such, DNA & protein synthesis require magnesium to form. 80% of our metabolism is dependant on magnesium. For every molecule of glucose you need to metabolize, you need 28 molecules of magnesium. The average american consumes 220-260lb of sugar a year! This drains the body & brain of magnesium. Non-sugar artificial sweetners are even worse, as they are neurotoxis.
Sulfur the other member of this happy union, is the third most abundant mineral in our body.
Though about half of its capacity is devoted to muscles, skin and bones, it plays other essential roles, including bonding proteins, enzymes, contributing to energy production, helping insulin function, detoxification, joint health, fighting fatigue, depression, physical and psychological stress, degenerative diseases, reducing chronic pain, improving cellular intake of nutrients, preventing cancer, reducing/eliminating muscle soreness, alleviating allergies, anti-parasitic, improving lung function, preventing neurological disease, preventing diabetes, increasing strength and endurance. A few key points to note include: Sulfate is required for formation of proteins in joints; those suffering with rheumatoid arthritis have low levels of sulfate in plasma and synovial fluid . Sulfate is essential in forming the mucin proteins which line the gut walls. Those suffering with irritable bowel disease exhibit low plasma sulfate. Sulfate is necessary for formation of brain tissue. Reduced sulfation can lead to faulty neuronal connections and later dysfunction. Sulfation is key in detoxifying drugs and environmental contaminants. Sulfate is not easily absorbed across the gut wall. Recent research has shown that it can be absorbed across the skin.
Sensory Deprivation is the second key component of Floatation Therapy.
What we see, what we hear, what we smell, what we touch all take up neurological resources to determine appropriate response, be that no action, fight or flight. Sensory deprivation is something all together different. Floating in skin temperature dense Epsom salt water in pitch darkness & silence, your mind finally enters deep restorative rest. Your brain enters the powerful zone of Theta Brain Waves a deep meditative state, where self "reprogramming", super-learning and vivid visualization can be used to enhance and improve a skill, break an addition or access the heights of your creativity. It is here that stress and anxiety begins to disappear, reducing the levels of associated neurochemicals (adrenaline, cortisol & ACTH) responsible for may of the stress related illnesses & conditions.
Gravity Reduction is the third unique aspect of Flotation Therapy.
80-90% of your neural activity is engaged in a balancing/counter-balancing dance with gravity. Floating in the buoyant Epsom salt water completely supports your body, reducing the impact of gravity by 80% and freeing up 80% of mental resources for other much needed improvements. Back pain, neck pain and other gravity induced aches (including the physical aches experienced during pregnancy) begin to disappear, leaving you feeling brand new again. Speaking of brand new, gravity is a well known contributor to physical aging and degeneration. Need we say more?
Benefits of Floatation Therapy
Floatation therapy is a luxurious escape from the constant stress of life's daily pressures and a natural way to heal the body and mind. The concept is similar to the mineral salt baths at the Dead Sea in Israel. Eight hundred pounds of Epsom salt is dissolved into the spa tub of skin temperature water to create this effect. Both lightproof and soundproof, this peaceful space frees you of gravity, noise, and other distractions. As if in deep meditation, your body and mind achieve calmness, entering into a theta brain wave state resulting in a profound state of relaxation. When combined with the zero-gravity environment, the floatation allows your body and mind to enter into its deepest state of relaxation - not found anywhere else on earth. Doctors, athletes, and float enthusiasts are using Floatation Therapy for neurological, circulatory, respiratory, digestive, muscular, skeletal, and hormonal balance. Floatation brings the body back into homeostasis.
Addictions (drugs, alcohol, tobacco or food)
Arthritis and Fibromyalgia
Asthma and Allergies
Back and neck pain
Concentration, motivation and memory loss
Depression and neurosis
Headaches / migraines
High blood pressure
Gastric ulcers Insomnia
Irritable bowl syndrome
Jet lag, insomnia and exhaustion
Multiple Sclerosis, fibromyalgia
Pre-natal Pre-menstrual tension
Skin conditions - psoriasis / eczema
Speeds recovery from illness
In addition to these many benefits, your learning abilities are at their greatest and your powers of visualization and creativity are substantially enhanced during floatation therapy. It has been said that you can learn a language in half the time while floating.
One hour session is equal to 4 hours of restorative sleep
Reduces cortisol levels back to a productive and normal state
Environment where the "training of the mind" becomes effortless
Speeds recovery time after any type of injury and improves ability to bounce back
Takes you to and keeps you in the "theta state" which allows the most creative part of our brain to engage
Balance a stressed out immune system through floating on a regular basis
Epsom salt is a great muscle relaxer and anti-inflammatory mineral, that also aids in the detoxification of the body
Why every Athlete should jump into a Float Tank
Posted by: Anna Kolomycki. Floating or flotation is therapy in which the person lies in a dense Epsom salt water solution in a tank (pod/room) that has been specially-designed for this. It is an incredible and highly-effective way of relaxing and relieving stress. This is a very widely-accepted therapy and is used by a number of world-renowned athletes to treat various sports-related conditions and aid in their recovery. It is also beneficial for those who don't play any sports but want to better manage the stresses in their system.
What is notable is the fact that the positive effects of floatation are also cumulative - the more frequently you use this therapy, the more you benefit. After several floats our clients frequently comment how they crave time in the float tank, it becomes very addictive. Sports-people from various fields, use this experience to optimise the effects of their training routines, manage fatigue and speed-up their recovery from sports injuries.
Recovery Time Frame
When the athlete is in the flotation tank, the actual rate of recovery post physical exercise is enhanced beyond recognition. Recovery that would generally take a very long time gets compressed into just a few hours. Since floating in the water that has high concentrations of Epsom salt reduces the stresses of gravity, the weight and pressure is taken off strained muscles, joints and bones. This increases the efficiency of the blood circulation right through the body. It also significantly improves the recovery time after injury. The body has amazing pathways set up, to alarm it of pain or injury, hot or cold etc when the brain receives these signals, it can then react and adapt accordingly. However this mechanism is not just designed to cope with injury. All positive signals of relief experienced whilst floating also go into the brain, producing a very profound, complete state of relaxation that is not to be dismissed.
Sports Performance Improvement
Athletes that use this float therapy in combination with visualisation techniques experience a very significant improvement in their performances. As the person's brain transitions into a theta state, it becomes much more open to suggestion. The CNS (central nervous system) can essentially be effectively trained to produce 'perfect performance'. Today a number of top athletes across Australia and the U.S use this technique to relax and up their performance in their chosen sport.
Working Against Gravity
While floating, gravity pressures gets taken-off the muscles and joints & the entire body is put in to a state of high physical relaxation. The blood pressure & oxygen intake reduces but the blood flow and distribution of red blood cells increases. These combined effects are especially beneficial to athletes, as it speeds the recovery from injury & assists in flushing-out cortisol, lactate & adrenaline that might have built-up either via training or performance.
Reduces Injury Risk
Floatation loosens the muscles & gives athletes a higher degree of control in their nervous systems. In effect, this reduces injury risk during training/competition. Floatation accelerates the athlete's recovery process and releases large quantities of endorphins (natural painkiller of the body) By being in an environment that facilitates sensory isolation, which is another component of floatation, the athlete truly has the space to reach the level of concentration required to have a tangible effect on his/her performance. Many modern training methods are focused on helping athletes master their "inner game" and assist in developing perfect synchronicity between body, mind and emotion and where better to find yourself then in a setting that is designed to help you lose yourself? Floatation is also used by many people in helping them identify areas of tension that they were not previously aware of. Many people report being able to have a sense of a certain body part, "out of their body" whilst floating, drawing attention to an area that they can then go to their practitioner of choice for diagnosis and treatment.
When are you going to float?
So you can improve recovery, you can manage pre-injury, you can reduce muscle tension and you can out perform competitors by harnessing the under-utilised power of relaxation in sport. When are you going to float?
Which Athletes use Floatation Therapy?
This list is not exclusive and with a growing momentum, jumping in now before it takes over your sport will give you the edge! Whilst floatation has been around for quite some time, it is more known in some sports than others. Commonly we see floatation being widely used within the following sports:
Long distance runners
Cross fit athletes
Pregnant women (yes if you are carrying a baby you should be considered an athlete!)
The Benefits of using a float tank in sport
In the floatation tank, gravity isn't a factor. The complete relaxation that it provides, gives all the muscles the much-needed break they need. The benefits are truly impressive. When the person is in the tank, every single muscle in the body gets the rest it needs and the time to recover. Though you may feel that lying in bed or a sofa has the exact same effect, the fact is that gravity is always at work and this adds stress to many parts of the body. Furthermore epsom salts are a magnesium and sulphate - a muscle relaxant and a protein builder for your joints. Not only can you truly decompress in the float tank, you absorb the minerals whilst you float directly into your muscles, allowing you to be noticeably less tense as soon as you get up! As a matter of fact the AIS (Australian Institute of Sport) sees flotation tank use as integral to the training regimes that their athletes' follow. The different benefits of using flotation therapy are:
Accelerates the recovery from injury
Increases energy (ATP)
Ideal space for visualization
Boosts the immune system
Reduces Lactic acid levels in the body
Aids in facilitated rest, improving athletes exposure to fatigue.
disclaimer:pricing and availability subject to change.
Sulfur the other member of this happy union, is the third most abundant mineral in our body. Though about half of its capacity is devoted to muscles, skin and bones, it plays other essential roles, including bonding proteins, enzymes, contributing to energy production, helping insulin function, detoxification, joint health, fighting fatigue, depression, physical and psychological stress, degenerative diseases, reducing chronic pain, improving cellular intake of nutrients, preventing cancer, reducing/eliminating muscle soreness, alleviating allergies, anti-parasitic, improving lung function, preventing neurological disease, preventing diabetes, increasing strength and endurance.