Recently I had my first float session. This place has large, enclosed salt water tubs in private rooms, where you "float" in the water and relax. Oh, and there is no light or sound. At least, at first there isn't sound. Then you realize that you can hear your own blood pulsing, and your heartbeat.
I didn't know that "floating" has been around since the 70's. "Floatation is a special kind of bath. Floating in a Himalayan salt solution, enclosed within the tank, is an extraordinary experience. Liberated from time, you travel deep into your innermost self. While floating, you are completely isolated from the outside world because the tank insulates you from all external stimuli. Additionally, the enclosure in which you are floating and the tank itself, maintains the same temperature as your body, so it doesn’t have to provide its own energy to balance the temperature," Dr. Barbara Hendel says.
Besides lowering your blood pressure, heart rate, and anxiety, what I found interesting is that floating stimulates Alpha & Theta brain waves (associated with the creative process and meditative states). There are many artists that frequently do art after floating. Art that comes from these sessions is usually so unlike what we normally do.
I found awareness. I found muscles tense, that I didn't know were tense. It is very strange to feel weightless and float like oil on top of water. Almost like an astronaut, but in the water. Stretching takes on a whole new meaning as there seems to be no boundaries. Afterwards, I felt a sense of calm that is hard to put into words. I can only describe it as a deep, peaceful quietness. Some compare the one-hour floating session to a vacation, because we return from the experience totally relaxed. I think we could all use more of that!