Life is hectic, completely saturated, fast paced and quite frankly, bloody stressful. Meditation, relaxation and making sure we take time to ‘zen’ is something we are of course, advocates of. But do we actually ever get pure, total switch off from everything –including the lights and the thoughts in our brains? Actual peace and quiet. Real peace and quiet?
There I lie in a bit of a panicked pickle, trying to calm the claustrophobia in me that I didn’t even know I had, whilst not being quite sure what parts of my body were in or out of the water, wondering how I wasn’t drowning, where to put my head and fighting the battle going on in my brain of trying not to have any thoughts – so much so that I was thinking even more. There was no light, no smell, no touch and – save for the gasping of my breath and drumming of my heart – no sound.
I was in a pod, a watery pod to be precise – completely naked to be even more precise ( slight mistake on my part) trying out London’s latest avent garde health hub – The Floatworks. Founded in 1993 in a small unit in Clink Street SE1, The Floatworks opened its doors this week at its brand new high specification float centre situated next door to Vauxhall station, in a tranquil courtyard at St George Wharf. Granted the first five to ten minutes of my experience were anything but zen, but by what felt like a click of a switch in the brain 5 minutes in, panic over, thoughts gone, float nailed – total peace commenced.
Floatation, or float therapy, is the practice of lying back effortlessly (floating) in an i-sopod floatation tank and is delivered through a super-saturated Epsom-salt solution, 25cm deep, containing 525kg of magnesium rich Epsom-salts. The solution is heated to skin temperature (35.5°C) and the environment in the tank is controlled so that the air is also skin temperature.
The magic alone of realising you have just floated in salty water and passed out, without drowning and dying is something special in itself. For me, it is the aftermath that makes it magic. I have been trying to figure out all week why I have felt so vibrant, calm and stress-free, even though life this week has been as hectic as any other. Not to mention the fact I have been smashing 5 intense gym sessions and haven’t felt the doms. It wasn’t until I came to write this review that I realised exactly why I have felt like a new woman.
Rearchers and physicians report that raising your magnesium and sulphate levels through therapy such as floatation can Improve heart and circulatory health, improve the body’s ability to use insulin and flush toxins and heavy metals from the cells, easing muscle pain. It has been found that excess adrenaline and stress are believed to drain magnesium, a natural stress reliever, from the body. Magnesium is necessary for the body to bind adequate amounts of serotonin, a mood-elevating chemical within the brain that creates a feeling of well-being and relaxation
The latest floatation therapy research shows that during floatation, the amygdala basically shuts off, ‘turning down’ anxiety in the brain. The more you float, the better you get at achieving this state. The Floatworks delivers the deepest of meditative states to those who are not experts in meditation, so that everyone can enjoy the benefits.
Quite literally pressing pause on your hectic word, floatation allows you to enter a state of deep mental and physical relaxation. By giving your body the opportunity to break from the endless input of sensory experiences that the world throws at you, your mind has the chance to recharge, rest and recoup.
Use the code ALTHEALTHY for 20% off a float at The Floatworks. Find out more about float therapy and The Floatworks on their website