July 1, 2016
Four Weeks of Floating – A Self Study
What a month it has been. I spent almost every day in a Sensory Deprivation Tank for at least 30 minutes. Here is a summary of everything that went on during those four weeks.
Question: What will floating everyday do to my body and mind?
Background: I had floated about 20 times before starting this experiment. Most of those floats were extremely relaxing and rejuvenating, helping with back pain I was experiencing at the time. I work at Float YXE here in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan therefore floats are free for me. On an Art of the Float Podcast I heard about another yoga teacher at a float centre doing a similar challenge. I decided to replicate it for something to do.
Hypothesis: I’ll feel really good. Maybe something funky will happen with my brain.
Experiment: Float every day for at least 30 minutes (reminder: I did this in June. In Saskatchewan. We don’t get much summer here. Next time I try something like this, it will be in winter!), record the duration and experiences.
Analysis: The most difficult thing about this was maintaining the consistency of the floats. By Week 3 I had missed 2 days. By Week 4 I had missed a total of 4 days. No big deal as this is not a race or a competition (although it did start out as one..Mr. Duncanheimer).
This brought me up to a total of about 50 floats, and about 65 hours or so in the tank. For the month of June I floated approximately 30 hours. Some floats were 30 minutes, one was 3 hours, but most fell in the 50-75 minute range.
I attempted only one overnight float and it lasted just over 2 hours. I ended up sleeping in the lobby that night. I will have to reattempt this one.
My 3 hour float flew by in an groundbreaking way. I felt as if I could have stayed in for at least another hour (or what my concept of an hour feels like), maybe more.
I feel like during this month, my creative process went through the roof in terms of problem solving. It has been a huge factor in me being more productive at work. During my some of my floats I came up with ideas of how to better manage work flow, how to be a more effective communicator, and all the ways to possibly cut a mango. It was uplifting, inspiring, and I really, really love mango.
Now my favourite bit: Pairing yoga and floatation…. To put into words how wonderful this can be is somewhat of a disservice to the actual act because it must be directly experienced. I love getting in the tank after a tough yoga practice as it lets me relax all my muscles and go deeper than I usually would otherwise. Imagine if the deity of your choice came down from the sky with puppies, kittens, and your favourite indulgence which would have a caloric equivalent of zero. Now times that by 69. (It’s pretty great.)
By the first week my skin and hair began to take on unprecedented angelic qualities. Soft and glowing!
Not every float was wonderful and introspectively delicious, some were quite boring and seemed like they were going to take forever. Isn’t the mind a funny thing?
For the most part, I always felt soooooo much better after I got out of the tank. Usually lifting my head up out of the water with a huge smile on my face.
Conclusion: On the days that I didn’t float, I felt it. I felt tighter, tired, and irritable. I will continue to float as much as I am able to until we leave for Portland in August (FOR THE FLOAT CONFERENCE AWWWWEEEEE YEAAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!).
I love having the time for myself and I love the chance that floatation gives me to visualize things, become much more creative, and have a moment of silence that I would otherwise go without. Over this last month I feel like I have developed a more personal relationship with floating, I can greet it like an old friend and stay as long as I need.