Background

Float

“When I step into the float pod all my tensions
and worries just melt away.”

THE EXPERIENCE

Flotation Therapy, as in Flotation R.E.S.T. (Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy), means to lie suspended in a supersaturated saline solution. The high concentration of Epsom salts in the solution allows the body to be completely buoyant. You can freely float on the water without any special breathing technique or muscle contraction. In this zero gravity state all muscle groups can lastingly relax, causing the spine and joints to decompress and allowing the healing processes to begin.

A float pod is a container filled with Epsom salt and water in which you can experience this state of weightlessness. The water has the same temperature as the outside surface of the skin (approx. 36.5°C). Inside the pod it is completely dark and silent so that the nervous system and the brain are not stirred by exterior stimuli. This sensory deprivation medium allows not only for the deepest form of relaxation at a psychological level but also leads to a blissful state of self-awareness.

HOW TO PREPARE

  • Please arrive 15 minutes (30 minutes if is your first float) before your appointment & check in.
  • Ensure your cell phone or any other devices are either turned off or set to silent.
  • Avoid smoking, consuming large meals and caffeine 2 hours before a float session.
  • Avoid shaving or waxing 12 hours before your float session.
  • Do not float if your hair is dyed red as this color always bleeds in the water.
  • Do not float if your hair dye is not stable, allow at least 2 weeks for the color to settle.
  • Do not apply makeup, moisturizer or perfume before coming for a float or sauna.
  • Wait at least 72 hours if you have applied artificial tanner.
  • Do not float when menstruating.
  • Flotation is strictly prohibited under the influence of alcohol or mind-altering drugs.
  • We reserve the right to charge up to $1,500 fee for spoiling the water or causing damage to the float pod.

If your hair dye is fresh, less than 2 weeks, we recommend that you check if the water running through your hair in the shower at home is fully clear. If there is still some color coming out you should wait a couple of more days/showers. Additionally, please shampoo your hair prior to floating in order to properly protect both your hair color/tint and the integrity of the float water.

Impeccable Hygiene

After the float session is over, the entire volume of water is emptied automatically and is cycled twice through four filtration methods. The pod is manually cleaned and sanitized after every guest. If there is no float session during the day, the pod stays empty and the system will automatically circulate the water every two hours. The water regeneration process consists of chemical, physical and mechanical cleaning methods, achieving a flawless result. The pod’s antibacterial material and the disinfection performed on the inner surface of the float pod after each session provides a clean, safe environment for the perfect sensory-controlled relaxation experience.

  • Physical Benefits

    Pain Relief

    Pain medicine developed from the initial desire to define the specific functionalities of the human body which play a role in the origination and perception of pain. Approximately 150 million people suffer from constant pain. The treatment of pain patients is one of the most expensive areas of the healthcare system.

    Both origination of pain and individual perception of pain are related to the degree of relaxation in the muscles and to the general degree of stress in the nervous system. Besides treating pain symptoms through medication by prescribing pain killers, using specific methods to create states of relaxation has meanwhile become an established practice. Mental techniques (e.g. auto-suggestion, autogenic-training) or yoga can help create mental and physical relaxation.

    Purely physiological relaxation methods have also been scientifically researched: floating has both an effect on the individual and subjective perception of pain as also on the autonomic nervous system, the system of pathways which transport pain impulses. A radical reduction of exterior sensory stimuli reduces stimulation of the nervous system so perceivably that over-stimulation is reduced and pain is perceived as being less intense.

    Relaxation and the reduction of sensory stimuli contribute to an increase in the release of endorphins and can thus be linked to pain relief also at bio-chemical level. A higher level of natural opiates in the blood of test persons was reliably tested in various examinations.

    Backache has become very widespread in the past years. Nearly half the population in western industrial countries complains of lasting or recurring back pain. Another 30% admit having suffered from back pain in the last two years. With this, approximately 80% of the population is affected by pain stemming from the spine. Chronic back pain is, next to heart disease, one of the most common reasons for inability to work and premature pension.

    Several university research projects have shown that by allowing the body lie suspended and gravity free in a floatation pod, healing processes especially of sports injuries are accelerated.

    In their ongoing research on the psycho-physiological effects of floating, neurosurgeon Dr. John Turner and psychologist Thomas H. Fine of the Medical College of Ohio have discovered that a session in a flotation tank can relieve pain considerably and even create slight feelings of euphoria. Dr. Thomas Fine reports that “practically all patients suffering from chronic pain claimed that they had forgotten their pain while floating. ” Floating increases the secretion of endorphins in the body, natural opiates, which reduce pain and create pleasure.

    FIBROMYALGIA

    Fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain, described as a constant dull ache, typically arising from muscles. It affects 2% of general population and women are much more likely to develop it than are men by a ratio of 9:1. It is a devastating and often unpredictable condition that causes dreadful pain and impacts life by interfering with the ability to do the simplest things.

    An international study of the effects of three flotation REST session on people suffering fibromyalgia showed a clinically and statistically significant reduction of symptoms as well as improvement in mood, energy and ability to function. The study also demonstrated a carry-over effect for most symptom reduction with progressive improvement. Case studies demonstrated that longer-term improvement can continue almost to remission with repeated treatment with this therapy.

    Chronic Fatigue

    From managing chronic stress and inducing a natural calm, to facilitating introspection and identifying various less-serving modes of thinking, many people report drastically improved sleeping abilities. The change in your physical state and your mental outlook may provide you with a healthier perspective in which to put your body and mind to rest much easier each night if sleeping is an issue. Also, 60 minutes in the tank can feel like 4-6 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 be experiencing.

    Sports Medicine

    The flotation tank has been used in various area of sports medicine for a number of years now. Floating in the super saturated saline solution has numerous positive effects on the organism, in particular when recovering from the stress of intensive exercise.

    Lactate is a metabolic product created in the muscles when glucose is broken down during physical exertion or when energy is produced anaerobically. The consequences of high lactate levels are fatigue, pain and muscle cramps. Floating gravity free in flotation tanks allows lactic acid to be transported out of the muscles faster thereby considerably reducing muscle contractions and strain.

    During training, muscles are stimulated with a very high intensity. Strengthening and muscle growth, however, nearly exclusively takes place when in a state of relaxation. When experiencing weightlessness, all groups of muscle can relax deeply. Using a flotation tank after intensive training is said to lead to more rapid muscle growth.
    When building up muscle, the best results are achieved by stimulating muscle growth during training and then allowing for deliberate relaxation.
    Most sports injuries do not occur through direct physical contact, but by incorrect muscle tension, overstretching or pulled muscles. The best way to prevent injuries like this is to loosen muscles prior to exercise (warm-up exercises). In a flotation pod, general muscle tension is reduced significantly, even after just short periods of time floating. This can lead to substantially reducing the risk of such injuries.

    SKIN HEALTH

    The particular health benefits of the mineral salts of the Dead Sea were already known in Antiquity. Through the centuries, humankind has discovered ever more aspects of the beneficial effects of mineral salts, especially when highly dosed in baths. When floating, the body lies suspended in a high concentrate of magnesium sulphate (also known as epsomite or bitter salts) the sensation is similar to that of bathing in the Dead Sea.

    Particularly in dermatology, a lot of research is being done on the effects of highly saturated saline solutions on human skin. Saltwater baths can be very helpful when treating common skin conditions such as allergies, neurodermatitis and psoriasis. Loss of moisture in the cells is balanced out and minerals and other nutrients are transported more easily through the cell membrane.

    The alleviation of a number of skin problems has been very well documented. Skin diseases seldom improve with medication or other therapies, so that many patients seek this approach as the only truly effective treatment. The salt penetrates hard skin and comparatively little water is absorbed. Studies show that proteins in the skin’s cells are broken down and with that cell proliferation increases. This naturally stimulates epidermal regeneration and the skin becomes smoother. Magnesium assists in normalizing exfoliation of the skin and accelerates the metabolism of the cells.

    When floating suspended in a super saturated saline solution, there are two additional effects, which, it is said, have at least an indirect effect on skin diseases of psychosomatic origin:
    • deep relaxation through the effect of floating weightlessly
    • sensory deprivation which relieves the complete nervous system.

    When floating in the Dead Sea, but also in other saturated salt baths it is recommended not to stay for more than 30 minutes, as some of the high-chloride salts (mostly sodium chloride) frequently cause skin irritations. By using high-purity magnesium sulphate, which is by far the most gentle salt to the skin, sessions lasting up to several hours in a super-saturated saline solution are possible and have a positive effect on the skin.

    ENDORPHINS

    Floating in a saturated saline solution enables the human body to take a position which is unlike being in a bed, a waterbed, a bathtub or lying on any other surface. This particular position is characterized by the following:

    • the spine is completely straight
    • individual vertebrae are not functional twisted
    • all muscle groups (in particular the muscles of the neck) can relax simultaneously
    • all joints, intervertebral discs, ligaments and bones are relieved at the same time

    Hereby acute and chronic tension is released and slipped discs, joint pains, sciatica, lumbago, pulled muscles or sprains improve. In particular chronic back pain, which has become the most widespread and common complaint can be relieved by floating in a saturated saline solution. 80% of the German population suffers from backache and relieving the spine by floating is a very simple yet extremely effective method to ease pain.

    Pregnancy

    Flotation Therapy provides a safe and effective way for women to escape the physical demands of pregnancy. The water is heated to skin temperature, 36°C. Unlike a hot tub, the body’s core temperature does not rise over the course of a session. Floating takes away added strain on the spine and soothes backaches and aching joints. Floating has been proven to help other common conditions of late-stage pregnancy- insomnia, depression and anxiety- by decreasing cortisol levels and encouraging the production of endorphins. It is often noted that the flotation therapy creates a “mirror effect” of the baby floating in the womb of the Mother and the Mother floating in the womb-like float pod. Women can bond with their babies in this peaceful environment.

  • Mental Benefits

    Stress relief

    Floating enthusiasts across the world agree that floating is one of the most effective means today of reducing stress. The Australian Institute of Sports, for example, has been using flotation for stress management very successfully for years. Scientific research shows that the deep relaxation has a lasting effect by accelerating the reduction of ACTH, adrenaline, noradrenalin and cortisol levels.

    • In the relaxed state in the flotation tank, it is virtually impossible to experience anxiety. As we know from behavior therapy, anxiety or fear and relaxation are mutually exclusive. Some dental clinics for example use flotation tanks for patients afraid of receiving dental treatment.
    • By deeply relaxing in the tank and screening out exterior stimuli, it is easier to become aware of and then experience your inner, psychic world more freely, openly and without distractions. Correlations, which would take a much longer time to recognize, can be comprehended, processed and changed when floating within a short time.
    • In a state of deep relaxation and inner and outer calm, you can influence mental processes more easily and with a longer lasting effect than without the help of a tank. This makes the flotation tank an ideal instrument for all types of mental training. The calm you experience is maintained, so that when you float regularly your stress tolerance can be noticeably increased.

    Meditation

    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.

    Creativity

    Using a state of deep relaxation as a source of creativity has been known to mankind since antiquity. The most famous examples for insights and revelation are the bathing Archimedes (the law of equilibrium of fluids), Newton sitting relaxed under an apple tree (discovery of the laws of gravity), and Albert Einstein, who had many of his ideas in the bathtub and used it for “consciousness trips”. There are a great many stories of moments of inspiration and creativity, which arise when people are drifting into sleep, looking at the sky or into the fire. They all speak of drowsiness, relaxation and a rush of vivid mental imagery and other typical characteristics of the theta state.

    Sensory deprivation allows the mind to enter into the theta state, a somewhat dreamlike state that most people only experience when on the cusp of sleep or right after waking in the morning. These lower frequency brain waves, primarily generated by the right hemisphere (the hemisphere associated with creative, non-linear thought), have been called “the state of inspiration” and there is evidence, both anecdotal and scientific, to support an increase in feelings of creativity accompanying these type of brain waves. This state is induced in a floating session. Theta offers access to unconscious material, reverie, free association, sudden insight, and creative inspiration. For a long time, scientists had a difficult time studying it, as it is hard to maintain for a longer period. Most people tend to fall asleep when they generate theta waves.

    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 preparation.

    Heightened senses

    Research indicates increased visual acuity, improved tactile perception, improved auditory sensitivity, and increased taste sensitivities after floating.

    Visualization

    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.

  • Flotation Protocol

    Best Practices

    • The float pod is used only for 1 person at the time.
    • Remove contact lenses and jewelry and be sure to use the washroom prior to the floating session.
    • Everyone is required to shower before and after floating. Rinse thoroughly to ensure that no bath products get inside the pod.
    • Before showering, insert earplugs. Ensure they are tightly sealed. We encourage you to wear the earplugs provided. If you choose not to wear them, thoroughly rinse each ear for 5 to 10 seconds after floating.
    • First time floaters may find that using the neck support will help them ease into a more relaxed state.
    • If you are claustrophobic you can leave the lid open (the lid can be stopped in any position) for as long as you like, you are always in control of your experience. The most important thing is to get comfortable. There are only two positions in the pod, with your arms at your side, palms down or arms over-head with your palms up. Next to the right bottom grip an assistance button is placed for use in case of an emergency.
    • The underwater music therapy, the 62 underwater LEDs for light therapy and aromatherapy can be set in the program beforehand.
    • You are free to get out at any time. While it is totally normal to sometimes feel bored or restless when settling into a float, we do suggest you try to push through these feelings as they tend to pass as you move deeper into your float.
    • Techniques while in the pod – your breath can be an amazing tool for calming the mind and relaxing the body. Try to breathe primarily from your nose. At first, you can consciously take deep breaths, but once you settle into your experience try less to manipulate the breath and more just observing the breath.
    • To minimize chances of getting saltwater in your eyes: enter water as gently as possible to avoid splashing and creating waves. Do not touch your eyes with wet hands and try not to tilt your head from left to right while floating. When float is over, wring your hair out, place a hand on your forehead and sit up slowly to avoid water running forward into your face. If you get saltwater in your eyes, use the washcloth provided to pat dry.
    • Bring your own personal items you would use after a shower, like a hairbrush, makeup, etc. We provide robes, slippers, towels, ear plugs, shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, body lotion, hair dryers.
    • Float suite reservations are 75 minutes in length. This allows for 60 minutes of floating and time to shower before and after.
    • Relax for 10-15 minutes after a float session to allow your body to readjust.

    Contra-indications

    Do not use if you have serious inflammation, fever, a communicable disease, acute bleeding, or intoxicated.
    If any of the following apply, we recommend you check with your health care provider before booking a float session.
    • Chronic medical and mental health conditions
    • Severe anxiety, panic attacks, PTSD
    • Kidney disease
    • Epilepsy
    • Infectious skin conditions
    • Running nose or fever
    • Nausea or diarrhea
    • Recent tattoos
    • Pregnancy in the 1st and 3rd trimester

  • What to Expect

    Weightlessness

    When lying suspended in water, the body is able to take up a position only possible when floating which creates the sensation of complete weightlessness. Muscles, skeleton, vessels and organs are freed from the effects of gravity. The body is able to enter a natural posture, free of tension, without contortions or pressure points. When in this special position, you can obtain a unique and easily achievable form of deep repose. All groups of muscles can relax simultaneously, and, freed of their own weight, joints, vessels and organs are substantially relieved.

    Sensory Deprivation

    Nearly everyone today has to deal with very large amounts of stimuli, to be able to meet the demands of daily business and private life. This sensory overload creates stress which leads to fatigue, tension and decrease in performance. Stress has a negative impact on our immune system and can trigger various diseases. The human brain uses about 80% if its capacity during the day to process and reflect on exterior stimuli. When floating the brain and the nervous system are relieved of all sensory perceptions:

    The water temperature inside the pods is consistently maintained at approximately 36.5°C, which corresponds to the skin temperature, so that the nerves on the surface of the skin do not perceive any difference. The water is neither experienced as warm nor cold. The body is at an ideal temperature and does not have to use any energy to balance changes in temperature.

    Magnesium

    Magnesium is considered a very valuable substance when treating the consequences of strokes. When prevalent in a sufficient amount, it also protects the body from neurological dysfunctions and strengthens psychic stability. Chemical signal substances (neurotransmitters) which pass between individual neurons, cross the synapses as electrical impulses. Ions, electrically charged particles, thereby create an electrical current which travels on concerted pathways through the body. Calcium ions in particular are responsible for triggering these impulses once a critical value has been reached. Magnesium, on the other hand, counteracts the calcium ions and functions as dampener, if the signals get too many and the transfer of information becomes too hectic. So, if there is magnesium deficiency, there can be bouts of higher frequencies of neurological processes, which are experienced as stress. This again can lead to nervousness, cramps, digestive disorders, and even to states of complete exhaustion. By supplying the body with sufficient magnesium, stress tolerance is increased. Magnesium can be supplied to the body in food, but can also be absorbed by the skin when taking a magnesium bath.

    Effects of Saline Solution Spas

    Brine baths have traditionally been used for healing in many cultures. They are the basis of many spa systems (e.g. Dead Sea products). Yet they do not only serve as cosmetic skin care but have a much broader range of benefits. Brine baths have positive effects on the skin, the cardiovascular system, metabolism, hormone functions, kidneys and muscles.

    • Relaxation of the muscles
    • Relief of the joints
    • Pain relief
    • Detoxification of tissues via the skin
    • Alleviation of rheumatic complaints
    • Relief of the autonomous nervous system
    • Generally relaxing and calming
    • Increase rehabilitation after heavy physical strain
    • Positive effect on psycho-vegetative exhaustion and overburdening mental strain

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P: 905 692 0088 / 800 578 8828

A: 8-1970 Rymal Rd East
Hamilton, Ontario L0R 1P0