When you enhance your body, you also change your mind. When you float, your body achieves a level of relaxation that is even deeper than sleep. As your mind stays awake, large portions of the brain are free from their normal tasks of sending signals from the organs and nervous systems. With more studies about floating every day here are 7 surprising ways floating improves your mental and physical well-being:
1. Provides Instant Meditation
If there’s an easier way to meditate than floating, I don’t know what it is! Most people claim to struggle with or find meditation challenging after 5 minutes, but floating forces you to let go and just focus on breathing. The water temperature responds to the skin at 93.5 degrees. This means you can’t even tell where the water ends and you begin. There are no lights or noises to interfere with your meditation and the focus on your breath. Floating is a gentle introduction to starting a meditative practice and only requires you to relax your body into the water.
2. Resets Your Circadian Rhythm and Improves Athletic Performance
Some of the world’s greatest athletes – like Carl Lewis – have used tank visualization techniques to help prepare for training. The Dallas Cowboys have also been known to use flotation tanks since the early 80’s to develop both the psychological and physical skills of the players. The Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) has also been using tanks to train their Olympic squads since 1983.
Floating allows the body to maximize the benefits of physical training. High-intensity workouts stimulate the growth of muscles’ while the actual strengthening and growth occur during relaxation. This usually occurs 30-40 hours after stimulation. Deep relaxation accelerates muscle tissues’ growth and regeneration while improving circulation. Strenuous physical exercise may also cause a rapid build-up of lactic acid, which is a toxic by-product of anaerobic glycolysis. This will cause cramps, pain, and fatigue, which is also linked to depression and anxiety.
In order to reach the athletic peak performance, this depends on a coordination of mental, physical and emotional skills. Modern methods of training help athletes to develop asynchrony of body, mind, and emotions. Floating is one method that will reduce the effects of reducing waste materials and lactic acid from the body along with the risk of over-training.
3. Combats Addiction
One of the most common addictions we have is constantly using electronic devices. The tiny doses of dopamine we get from surfing the web or checking our Facebook can be dangerous. But whether you are addicted to social media, food, or even drugs, floating can help ease the brain and help battle those harmful addictions. Many users claim to become more involved with their surroundings than the desire to check for likes and notifications.
4. Helps Soothe PTSD and Anxiety
Groups including the Flat Clinic and Research Center are currently undergoing studying of floating as a potential treatment in therapy for those who suffer from PTSD and anxiety. Floating helps reduce activity in the cortex. This decreases stress hormone production and simultaneously allows the body to have a deep relaxation that causes the release of endorphins.
5. Fuels Productivity and Inspires Creativity
A 90-minute session may seem like a long to float, but after a while, your alpha or beta brainwaves transition into theta waves. The usually occurs before you sleep and before you wake up. Floating also brings your consciousness to a new level. Many people have claimed to have creative breakthroughs and have discovered solutions. Without any distractions for a solid amount of time, this will allow your brain to think more freely.
6. Increases Positive Theta Brain Waves and Reduces Negativity
During a research study in 1999, flotation increases the theta waves in the brain. Theta waves have also been shown to be activated by meditation in the same way. They are also active during REM before and after sleeping. Floating has also been shown to eliminate unwanted negativity in the body. The urinary cortisol and Plasma, ACTH(adrenocorticotropic hormone), renin activity, epinephrine, blood pressure and heart rate are all directly associated with stress.
7. Improves Magnesium in the Body
What makes floating work is the 850 pounds of Epsom salt. As water is one of the best brain foods your body can have, Epsom salt consists of sulfate and magnesium. According to research, most Americans have a magnesium deficiency and floating can help raising your magnesium levels.
There are no given negative side effects as all the effects of sensory relaxation are proven to be very beneficial for the body at a physical, mental, and emotional level. It is the easiest, fastest, and safety way to achieve relaxation, ease the symptoms of depression and the quality of daily living.