Last week, James and I were invited down to Floatation Life in Crownhill, Milton Keynes to try out the Floatation Therapy Experience.
As runners, the tanks are deemed perfect for us and our recovery. So we thought, anything to help our achey muscles, especially as we are both in the middle of our Marathon training. A few intense weeks has really taken its toll.
On arrival, we were asked to take a seat in the massage chairs and relax. We had our phones taken off of us, a symbol of disconnection. Running my own business, my phone is never more than about 2ft away from me, so having my phone removed was actually quite nice. I was ‘forced’ to unwind and relax.
Phil, the owner, talked us through the experience and explained to us the benefits of Flotation Therapy. We’d both read up online before the experience but were still unsure of what to expect.
Flotation Therapy is good for your emotional well-being as you really can ‘switch off’ from the outside world, something that is rare to find in our modern day society.
But for me, the real hook of the experience was the sports recovery element. The tank is filled with around 400 – 450kg of Epsom salts. The salts also allow you to ‘float’ in the water.
Many runners may have heard of the benefits of Epsom Salts before and we are encouraged to bathe in them after a long run. But with this amount of concentration in the tank, I was excited to try this out. Epsom Salts are full of magnesium which can improve:
Oxygen and blood supply
Recovery from muscular strains and damage
Seemed like a win-win. Aiding recovery, revitalisation and making us feel fresh again!
After the discussion, we were presented with headphones playing ‘Zen’ music and had an opportunity to sit back and relax. After around 10 minutes we were led through to our respective rooms and shown around the tank.
There is an area to shower in before you enter the pod to wipe away any dirt or oil. Once in the tank, you slide two doors to shut the pod. So, for anyone claustrophobic, this is good. You know you can always exit at any point, you are not confined by any locks or bolts. The lights switch off within 1 minute and soft music plays to signal the start of your float.
And that’s it, you, laying in a pool of water for an hour. No noise, no sound.
At first, it took me a while to relax, but the strange thing was, when inside the pod I had no idea of concept or time. Had 10 seconds, 1 minute or 5 minutes passed?
They say it’s quite rare to fall asleep on your first float, but I was able to drift off, what felt like quite quickly. It felt like I was asleep for the majority of the hour and I woke a little while before the music played to signal the end of the session.
I must admit that before entering the pod, I did feel tired and my body ached from some heavy few weeks of training so I think I was ready for it. Phil had said that a lot of it is within the mind. If you feel tense before going in, that will probably affect your float.
After exiting the pod, you have to shower once again, due to the amount of salt within the tanks and we changed before entering the Relaxation Room. Dim lighting and another set of massage chairs really ended the experience well.
Both James and I felt really relaxed after the experience and my body felt completely different than when I entered.
Since the experience, both James and I have noticed some differences in our training. Now, I’m not sure if this is down to the Floatation Experience or was a contributing factor, but we’ve both put in some good performances the last 7 days.
I was able to achieve a Personal Best at park run on Saturday of 20:02 (a few seconds away from my PB, although, Strava said I went through in 19:46 – which is a PB wow!)
James has commented on how fresh his legs have felt this week and his pace on his ‘easy’ run on Wednesday was considerably quicker than recent times. We have both been training very consistently lately so a large factor would have been down to that. But potentially the ‘Floatation Life Experience’ may have enhanced our performance further.
I think we’ll have to try a second float soon to find out!
You can find out more information via their website: