Floating

Chumayo's flotation pool
Chumayo’s flotation pool is in a light-free, quiet room containing a buoyant solution of of Epsom salts dissolved in ten inches of water. The high density saline solution allows floaters to drift effortlessly in a state similar to zero gravity. The pool is so buoyant that everyone floats, including non-swimmers. The water is maintained at skin temperature, a neutral 95° F, which eliminates sensory stimulation of the skin. The pool is fully ventilated. Chumayo's pool has a handicap lift for those individuals who need assistance getting in and out of the pool. A trained staff person assists with the lift at all times. The pool is in a private room with its own shower and changing area. The water is filtered and treated after each use. Floaters may choose silence and darkness, or they may prefer to float while listening to relaxation tapes with the light on. Flotation provides floaters with an intensified consciousness of the body and mind. Floaters may reflect, ponder, explore, and refine their powers of concentration and creativity.

What is Flotation?
Without the distraction of light, sound, tactile stimulation or gravity, you can achieve a state of relaxation deeper and more profound than by any other means available. Research indicates that response to gravity and sensory input occupies 90% of all central nervous system activity. At rest, free from the stresses of the world and constraints of ordinary life, you are able to release the tensions and strains

accumulated and carried with you day to day. The experience of flotation is also one of heightened awareness of mental, emotional and physical process. Floating is a powerful therapy with numerous applications for health promotion.
Why Float?

Relaxation is an art
For many people relaxation is an elusive state. Fortunately, it is a natural ability which can be reacquired. Floating is an effortless and efficient method of achieving maximum relaxation in a minimum of time.

Floating alleviates stress
While floating, the body is liberated from its continual struggle with gravity, and the brain is free of bombardment from external stimuli. Breathing slows down, heart rate and blood pressure decrease, stress-related biochemicals are lowered, while the production of endorphins is stimulated, generating a state of calm and well-being.

Floating improves memory and learning
Research shows that flotation pools are excellent tools for accelerated learning, increasing the mind’s powers of comprehension, retention and original thinking. Practical applications include preparing for exams or speeches and learning new languages.

Floating expands creativity
Floating intensifies mental imagery and frees the mind from limiting patterns. This generates access to unusual powers of creativity, imagination, visualization, problem solving, and highly organized thought processes.

Floating promotes health
Blood vessels dilate, increasing the flow of oxygen to the brain and all parts of the body. This fortifies the immune system, promotes healthy cells and tissues, and supports healing from injuries and illness. The freedom from gravity and production of endorphins provide a safe method of pain relief.

Floating intensifies athletic focus and boosts performance
Freedom from external stimulation creates the optimum environment for mentally practicing physical endeavors such as sports, martial arts, dance and other movement arts. Athletes are also able to speed their recovery from peak output and eliminate fatigue and “post-race letdown.”

Floating enriches meditation, self-awareness and healing
In addition to alpha waves, floating induces slower, more powerful theta brain waves, which are accompanied by vivid imagery, free association, sudden insights, creative inspiration, feelings of serenity and oneness with the universe. This highly productive and enlightened state is usually attained only by those skilled in deep meditation practices.

Tips for First Time Floaters

Floating for the first time is a new experience. It is unfamiliar and may take some getting used to. Time may become distorted, seconds may seem like hours or minutes like seconds. You may find your mind sets up an incessant chatter, making lists, thinking about what if this or that happened, or what about dinner, or what did he mean when he said that … Your mind is trying to keep itself in ordinary reality. It is resistance, and it is perfectly normal. It is like sitting down to meditate for the first time.

One way to deal with the busy mind is to accept it and observe it, knowing that it will stop when it’s ready. Or you can concentrate on your breathing, inhaling, exhaling, inhaling … Listen to one of Chumayo’s guided imagery tapes while you float. Know that resistance is normal, and be understanding and forgiving to your mind. It wants to keep you safely in ordinary reality and may need extra time to reach that elusive state of profound relaxation. What often happens, though, is that after some initial resistance, the mind surrenders, and floaters enter a deep and powerful quiet place.

Here are some floating rules:

1.) Remove all eye makeup. (The saltwater is heavy and will cling to mascara, stinging if it gets into your eyes.)

2.) Keep a face cloth nearby. A favorite trick of the mind is to think the eyes need to be rubbed. If you have this thought while floating, use the face cloth to keep the salt solution out of your eyes. If you do get salt water in your eyes, know that the stinging will stop soon, or get out and run some cold water over your face.

3.) If you have any nicks or abrasions, cover them with a protective cream that Chumayo provides before floating. This will keep the solution from stinging. Shaving is not recommended the day of your float.

4.) If you drink coffee, make sure to float at least four hours after your last cup. Coffee can add to endless mind chatter and prevent relaxation.

5.) If you want to use floating to lose weight, stop procrastinating, improve your memory, or any other self-improvement technique, set up a program allowing a regular float schedule. Practice affirmations while floating, such as, “The weight comes off quickly and easily. Small amounts of food satisfy me.”

All the wonderful things that can happen with floating may take time, like anything else. I am a believer in floating (that’s why I offer it here at Chumayo!). For healthy change, time, motivation, and work are necessary. Flotation is a tool that can help you achieve your goals. It is unique and extraordinary, and I hope you will find it as wonderful as I have. ---Julie

Other Places to float in the US

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