7 Theories of Floating

7 theories of floatingFloating in a sensory deprivation tank has powerful effects on a number of levels including the physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual. What is it that can claim to be so actively beneficial in a passive device? This question is responsible for a great deal of research taking place in numerous cities around the world. Much evidence from this research is able to be categorised into one of the following seven distinct, yet interrelated groups that Michael Hutchison wrote about in his book The Book of Floating. These categories are often referred to as the Seven Theories of Floating

There are a number of quite different approaches to floating. While each successfully “explains” some of the remarkable effects of floating, none of them purports to offer an overriding theory, a superordinate explanation of exactly how and why floating works. None of these explanations, that is, is the explanation. However, when we see them not as competing theories but rather as integral parts of a single system- parts that interact synergistically, dynamically, to create a whole that is greater than the sum of the parts- we begin to perceive the real nature of the unified-field theory of floating. -Michael Hutchison, The Book of Floating

During flotation the brain is freed from the constant demands of orienting the body in space and processing external stimuli. Freed from these two major cerebral demands the brain can slip into profoundly deep and rejuvenating states of relaxation which eventually leads to theta brainwave patterns. The experience of floating also aids the body in reaching a state where various bodily systems are able to reset themselves and recalibrate for optimum function. Two such systems are the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems, responsible for the fight-or-flight response and the relaxation response. Modern research has thoroughly documented how chronic activation of the sympathetic nervous system by routine daily stressors is the hallmark of the modern stress epidemic.

The 7 Theories of Floating




Float Life7 Theories of Floating
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  • Yvette - August 7, 2015 reply

    I have always loved the sensation of floating in pools and am lucky enough not to have to wiggle hands and feet to stay afloat.
    I suffer from Chronic Pain Syndrome am a Type 2 Diabetic and have a few other health issues going on.
    I am on a Disability Pension, my Husband is my carer,combined with raising 2 daughters, money is tight.
    PLEASE be honest, do you think this could help me with pain and anxiety.
    Hope to hear from you soon.
    Take care,

    float life team - August 10, 2015 reply

    Hi Yvette,

    I sent you an email with some more detail – please look out for it. Many people find real relief from pain both while they are floating and for days afterward, some find relief only while they are floating, but find that escape and ability to sleep better “worth it”. The relaxation that floating offers can definitely help with anxiety but the only way to know how it will help you as an individual is to try it – please do, and you are welcome to bring your husband along at the special offer rate sent in the email.

    Warm Regards
    the float.life team

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