There’s no better way I could think of to start a Monday morning, or even spend a Saturday evening, than with the most relaxing experience you can find in London. Flotation Therapy had been on my radar for a couple of years when I first tried it but was just one of those things that I never get around to. I’ve been lucky enough to have a few sessions at Floatworks in both their Vauxhall location and their most recent Angel location. If you’re wondering what it’s all about, I’ve shared the full experience here so you can go along feeling prepared…
One of the sessions I attended a few years back was part of a dry January collaboration I did with BRITA as apparently, one of the reasons that people say they drink, is to relax. So BRITA found us all a new way to relax huh?! I also tried out floating as a way to recover post workout and it was the perfect end to my half marathon and cyclocross race days!
What is Floatation Therapy?
Basically, floatation therapy is a session that is undertaken by floating in a warm salt water in a float tank. Inside the tank is pitch-black, it’s also light-proof and soundproof.
The Benefits of Floating
The water in the tank is filled with Epsom salts which means that when you are in a flotation tank, your body absorbs the minerals which increases your body’s magnesium and sulphate levels. Floating also helps to calm your nervous system and enhances your body’s natural ability to heal. Cortisol levels are lowered through the deep relaxation state that you enter when floating.
Some flotation therapy benefits:
- reset your hormonal and metabolic balance
- ease pain
- cure jet lag
- improve physical performance
- become fantastically relaxed!
My Visit to Floatworks Angel
My most recent visit to Floatworks was to their new Angel location. Because I wanted to get the session in before I jetted off on holiday, I ended up booking for 9pm on a Saturday night on the day of my first cyclocross race for the season. It kinda worked out to be a blessing in disguise.
I arrived bright (dark?!) and early for the session which gave me time to get shown around and to be reminded of how everything worked as well as time to sit down, chill and have a cup of herbal tea.
The One Hour Float Experience
In the room is the tank (obviously), a shower and a bench. I had a quick shower and popped in the ear plugs before my session started. The first ten minutes of your experience is accompanied by relaxing music while you get into the tank and get acclimatised.
Inside the tank are two buttons – one to control the light in the tank and one to call reception in the case of an emergency. There is also a spray bottle of fresh water which comes in handy should you get the salt water from the tank in your eyes. You can choose to leave the lid open or close it for the full experience (as pictured above).
You enter a dreamy state, similar to the roaming mental freedom you get just before you nod off.
Floating on the surface of water, buoyed by salts, the logical left side of the brain slows and synchronises with its creative right side.
Escaping gravity, temperature, touch, sight, and sound, your physical and mental energy is conserved and directed into revitalising you.
In my first ever float, I closed the lid and tried sooooo hard to relax and float. However, at that time I was not a huge fan of swimming, nor water. Eventually (before the music stopped) I managed to let go and allow myself to float. There was noticeable muscle tension in my core, neck and shoulders so I used my arms to form a support for my neck and bobs yer uncle! In my session I’ve always been somewhere between awake and asleep, with very few thoughts running through my mind.
Knowing what to expect made the sessions after my first much easier to relax. I think having learnt to swim in the interim, and increasing my confidence around water also helped (although there is no risk of drowning while floating as the water is shallow and too salty for you to sink).
When the music comes back on you know you have 5 minutes remaining of your flotation therapy experience, plus about 15 minutes to shower and get dressed. At the Angel location they have a room with hairdryers and other beauty bits, plus an area (pictured above) where you can just chill out and drink more tea if you wish.
If you’re looking to try out flotation therapy in London, then you have to check out Floatworks. Feel free to drop a comment below if you have any questions or wanna share your experience.
Have you tried floatation therapy before?