A Sensory Deprivation Tank (aka Float Tank) is used for Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy (REST) and can create many improvements in both body and mind through regular use.
The Float Tanks at Athlete’s Touch are all Tanks (not Pods), which have full walls and a high ceiling…. If you can visualize laying on a queen sized bed and looking up at your bedroom ceiling, then you have a good idea of the interior dimensions.
Each Float Tank is filled with about 8” of water with approximately 1100 lbs of Epsom Salts and the water & air temperature are maintained at about 94-95 degrees (same temperature as the outside of your skin) so that as you initially adjust to the Float Tank, you’ll find that your tactile sense drifts away.
Each Float Tank room has been specially designed and constructed in order to eliminate outside noise. With the reduction of what you feel, the elimination of any auditory or visual stimulation, you’ll find the total disconnection to be a peaceful deeply relaxed state…and sometimes a meditative experience. Of course if you prefer to listen to music and/or watch the colored LED lights cast upon the inside of the fiberglass, that can be a very relaxing experience in its own right.
No two float experiences are exactly the same but the cumulative benefits of floating are fantastic. We’ve listed some benefits below. In addition, our team of Massage Therapists are available to provide sessions as part of "Combo Sessions" whether that be float then massage or the opposite.
The 3 Float Tank Rooms at Athlete's Touch are top of the line. These same tanks are in use at many professional sports team training facilities.
Benefits of Float Therapy
IMPROVES THE RELAXATION RESPONSE
The tank suppresses the functioning of the sympathetic nervous system which when active produces our fight or flight response. And it then activates the parasympathetic nervous system which is responsible for relaxation, healing, replenishment, etc. Some physical symptoms of the relaxation response are decreased muscle tension, decreased blood pressure, decreased stress hormones, and increased endorphins.
Research indicates increased visual acuity, improved tactile perception, improved auditory sensitivity, and increased taste sensitivities after floating
Arthritis, back pain, neck pain, tendinitis, bursitis, inflammation, and psychosomatic pain relief have all been documented via tank use.
INCREASED IMMUNE FUNCTION
Immune function is enhanced by suppressing stress hormones which not only weaken the immune system but also suppress the digestion and reproductive systems, affect regeneration processes, and decrease insulin sensitivity
Floating increases circulation to extremities, promotes greater elimination of metabolic by products, decreases the forces of gravity to help promote greater muscular relaxation, and it can prevent adrenal fatigue.
Floating decreases chronic muscle tension and creates greater awareness of less noticeable areas of muscle tension and imbalances.
The extremely high concentration of Epsom salts are absorbed through skin and can actually supplement your diet for a mineral that has been shown to be deficient in the average populations diet. Mg can prevent cardiovascular disease, regulate high blood pressure, prevent osteoporosis, relieve menopause symptoms, provide PMS relief, create healthier bones and teeth, and is involved with detoxification.
INCREASED STRESS RESISTANCE
Regular floating can alter the set-points in the endocrine homeostatic mechanism which can cause adjustments such as a lower adrenal activation threshold. This means that we become more resistant to the stimuli of chronic stressors bombarding us in modern urban settings and modern lifestyles and literally we have a physiological higher threshold. The modern urban life-style wont affect our stress response as much.
Meditation has a plethora of researched benefits and floating is a unique and phenomenal tool to cultivate mental stillness. It often generates a sensation of being intensely awake yet extremely relaxed; presence. It can induce theta-state brainwaves and allows for one to remain conscious in this frequency instead of falling asleep. Floating may induce an altered state of consciousness.
CHRONIC STRESS OR RELIEF
The tanks environment eliminates as much external stimuli as possible. It lets your nervous system have a break. Having this experience can be very refreshing, nourishing and healthy for our bodies and minds. Humans are well adapted for acute stress, however, for chronic stressors such as noise and air pollution; business, social, and family pressures; war; unemployment; street crime fear; general antagonism between the sexes; humans are not well adapted and stress has been cited to be a cause of several forms of disease.
The mental “reset” patterns exist throughout our lives. Going throughout our daily routines we get “numb” to so much around us, we become automatic with so many of our thoughts, our actions, our environments. The “resetting” experience provided by the tank can shift us out of this automated existence and bring us into greater awareness of the things we are often over-looking, less aware of or insensitive to, and not appreciating.
Floating is a great way to bring greater awareness to various patterns of behavior. Floating has shown to have beneficial effects such as decreased anxiety and depression; increased calmness or sense of well-being; it has shown fantastic results towards anti-smoking assistance as well as positive effects.
After settling into the floating experience research has shown greater hemisphere synchronization (promoting greater communication between the right (creative-side) and left (analytical-side) lobes; the majority of people are left-dominated. Also, people experience increased vertical communication between the primitive reptilian brain, the limbic middle or mammalian brain and the conscious neocortex. These synchronizing reactions can cause elevated states of creativity, greater non-linear connections, and deeper realizations.
With literally zero outward distractions your attention is easily redirected inward. Habitual thought-pattern recognition and analysis can be clearly discovered, monitored, and addressed. Various forms of mental programming/reprogramming become very powerful tools to re-evaluate and change your thoughts with clarity and repetition.
The combination of being extremely relaxed while intensely awake allows techniques of visualization to become very powerful. From athletes preparing for competition to public speakers rehearsing a presentation, the tank can induce the calm needed to perform at ones best. Mental rehearsal research has shown it to be just as practical as physical rehearsal.
SUPER – LEARNING
With the brain being held in a theta state wave-length the mind becomes hyper-suggestible. With less distractions and greater resources at its disposal the mind is able to absorb new material very deeply with research showing improved performance in memory and recall activities. It is great to use in conjunction with exam.
This is a multidisciplinary approach to how well our immune system functions based on our state of mind. It correlates having a positive healthy state of mind with a well-functioning immune system. Some research has even shown how focusing on an injury of diseased area of the body with positive feelings of a healing intention has improved recovery rates from various ailments.
Floating and the relaxation response it induces flood the body with endorphins. These neurotransmitters are responsible for relieving us from pain, enhancing our mood (decreasing feelings of depression to potentially generating feelings of euphoria), they can suppress our appetite, and decrease anxiety leaving us in a calm and clear state of being.
About 40 minutes into your float your brain stops producing its normal Alpha waves and starts churning out Theta waves. These are responsible for that ‘between-waking-and-sleeping’ state, and you make them naturally every night before you conk out. While it only lasts for a few sparse moments in your bed, you can achieve a prolonged Theta state in the tank.
60 minutes in the tank can feel like 6 hours of sleep. It is extremely therapeutic, refreshing and rejuvenating. So if you pulled an all-nighter, suffer from insomnia or have a baby who never lets you sleep the night through, floating can help make up for any lack of sleep you may experiencing.
Without gravity pushing you down all the time, your spine lengthens an inch, chronic pain is relieved, and your muscles get to fully rest. Unlike lying on a mattress, lying in water allows blood to flow freely all throughout your body. There’s no need to readjust your position to get comfortable.