Like yoga and meditation before it, floating has a long and proud tradition of helping its practitioners live happier, healthier and more fulfilling lives. But unlike these more established practices, floating has remained relatively unknown in the mainstream – until now.
“More and more people are trying to take better care of themselves,” explains Floatworks co-director, Ed Hawley. “That could involve being more mindful, reducing their stress levels, attempting to treat existing injuries and medical conditions or trying to improve their mental or physical performance. And as recent studies have shown, floating offers a range of benefits that can help them achieve these goals.”
Fellow co-director, Chris Plowman, experienced floating’s life-changing potential firsthand, when a physiotherapist prescribed it to treat his chronic back pain. The recovery-enhancing results stunned him, and he was quick to recommend it to Ed.
“I found it to be a really enlightening experience,” Ed continues. “Even during my first session, I started having really deep, profound thoughts. It made me realise that I wasn’t actually finding my job and lifestyle very fulfilling. It was a bit of a wake up call.”
In early 2016, when the opportunity arose to go into business with original Floatworks founder and floating guru, Tim Strudwick, it was something they simply couldn’t pass up.
“The thing that really sold me on it was the strength of the research,” Chris explains. “Practitioners have been reporting the benefits of floating anecdotally for decades, but it’s only in the last ten years that scientists have been able to quantify them with robust, empirical studies.”
The majority of this research has been carried out by neuropsychologist Justin Feinstein at the Laureate Institute for Brain Research in America. Feinstein was able to prove that floating significantly reduces activity in the part of the brain known as the amygdala, which controls our innate fight or flight response to real or perceived threats.
This in turn helps to reduce the production of cortisol, also known as the stress hormone – high levels of which have been linked to a host of health issues, including weight gain, heart attacks and depression.
Floating also offers immediate physical relief – especially for those such as Chris suffering with postural problems. “If you think about it, gravity is always making your joints and muscles work to support your frame to some extent, even when you’re lying down in bed,” says Chris. “Floating removes that stress entirely, allowing your body to assume a fully natural position, which also helps to improve blood flow.
A key factor in Floatworks’ ability to maximise these benefits is the cutting-edge i-sopod floatation pods used in each room. “Offering these kind of innovations is something we’re really passionate about,” Chris continues. “We’re open to anything and always on the lookout for the best new technologies. If it helps to make floating a more uplifting, positive and beneficial experience for our members, then we want to incorporate it into what we do.”
“Our aim is to open ten new centres in the next three years, which would allow us to help over 250,000 people annually,” Ed says. “Once we’ve achieved that, we want to launch a total wellness centre, which will offer a full range of services such as infra red saunas, freezing cold plunge pools, meditation rooms and healthy kitchens, as well as floating, of course.”
The future of wellness is here.
Wondering what all the fuss is about? Check out our latest floating offers to find out firsthand how floating can change your life…