I received such a lovely surprise gift from a special friend in January - a Floatation Therapy Session. 
A what session? 
I’d heard about them but didn’t know very much. So I took to the internet to find out more.  
Having looked on the internet I discovered that you spend time in what looks like a giant boiled egg with no sound or light. Total sensory deprivation! Apparently, this is to allow your mind and body to unite in deep restful, relaxation without distractions. It’s also known as Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy or REST. The egg contains warm water with lots of salt in. A more scientific explanation is: 
“Floatation therapy is a form of sensory deprivation where an individual floats in a tank filled with highly concentrated Epsom salt water. The experience is meant to promote relaxation and stress relief and has been used for pain management and to enhance mental clarity. In a floatation therapy session, you float effortlessly in a pod or tank filled with water and Epsom salt solution. This creates a sensation of weightlessness, which can promote deep relaxation, reduce stress, and alleviate physical pain. Some people also report enhanced creativity and improved mental clarity after a float session.” 
Well, that sounds just what I need. 
I completely confused Alexander when telling him about it. He asked why my friend had bought me a flirtation session :) The conversation was over the phone so I can excuse the misunderstanding. After explaining to him it all made complete sense! 
Once we had established some mutually convenient dates, I telephoned Redmayne Lodge in Strensall to book. 
Booking was easy. I was told that all we needed would be our swimming cozzies and a towel.  
Great...oh, hang on a minute I didn’t have a cozzie!! Shopping time. 
Thoughts….time shut in a pod in complete dark and silence…ooooh. Would I feel claustrophobic? What would I do for the hour? How will I know how long I’ve been in there? Will I get cold? Will my ears be OK? (They are sensitive after having an ear infection recently.) Do I need to shower before or after or both? How is it going to make me feel? Will I be sleepy for the rest of the day or have a healing crisis? 
Wait and see. 
The day arrived and off we went. Redmayne Lodge was easy to find in Strensall, just outside of York. There was ample free on-site parking available. We were met by Darron who took time to show us around and explain the treatment to us. 
Each floatation tank typically contains around 1100 litres (approx. 240 gallons) of water with ½ ton (approx. 500 kg) of Epsom salt, which is dissolved in the water to provide buoyancy for the person floating. Epsom salts, also known as magnesium sulphate, are typically the only ingredient used in a floatation tank. The high concentration of Epsom salts in the water allows you to float effortlessly, which can help you relax and relieve stress. Apparently there’s more salt in than in the Dead Sea. A treatment is excellent for relaxation, pain relief, recovery, sleep, creativity and learning.  
Bring it on! After completing the required health consultation form and given a pair of ear plugs we were good to go. 
After a quick shower and change into my new cozzie I popped in my ear plugs and stepped into the warm water in the pod. The water was about 50cm deep and apparently body temperature. I tried to sit down but my legs kept floating to the top, so I knelt down and tried to close the lid. I couldn’t reach! So I stood up and gently pulled the lid closed. (Darron did tell us that we could leave the lid open if we felt the need.) Fortunately, there was a blue light on inside the pod. We were told that we could control the lighting. It was possible to have it on blue, colour changing or off totally. As this experience is to achieve a level of stillness and silence it’s recommended to turn the lights off. Well in for a penny and all that. I turned the lights to colour changing but it was a bit like a disco so I turned them off! 
There was a woggle (float thing) there which we had been recommended to use at first to become accustomed to floating and relaxing the neck muscles so with that behind my head I was all set. 
It was dark. 
It was quiet. 
I was floating. 
I wasn’t a bit claustrophobic. 
My ears were fine. 
I didn’t really care what time it was. 
I just laid there floating about. 
Every now and then I had a bit of a swish about in the water. (I do love a bath that doesn’t get cold after you’ve been in a while.) Then off I’d go floating again. I didn’t fall asleep. I did feel very relaxed after a while and I just let my monkey mind wander off without feeling the need to bring it back to the moment. I just acknowledged thoughts as they came and went. Nothing was important at that time. 
After a passage of time (no idea how long) I began to wonder how long I’d been in there. I had no idea if I’d been in for 15 or 55 minutes. It was at this point that the lights came on! Darron had mentioned that shortly before the end of the treatment the lights would come on and a water filter would start.  
Ok so I had light…when would the filter come on? Must have only been minutes and the filter started. I was still happily floating and so the filter made me spin around. I did think that the filter jet would feel good against my shoulder like the jets in a pool or jacuzzi but as I was floating I couldn’t control where the jets were and I was still being gently spun around. 
Time to get out, showered and dressed ready to find somewhere for lunch. 
So, what were my conclusions? 
This was an odd yet very pleasant experience. It felt very soothing to be weightless in warm water. The darkness wasn’t a problem at all, in fact it was very calming. It did feel strange to open my eyes and everything still be pitched black. Even at home with no street lights it almost never gets that dark. It was strange to open and close my eyes and there to be no difference. I didn’t get bored. I think I just allowed myself to “be”. It wasn’t completely silent as from time to time you could hear people moving around up the stairs but no phones ringing or people chatting just me and my breathing. 
Would I go again? 
Definitely. Having not known what to expect I think I took a while to relax into the experience but now I’ve done it once I’m sure I will drift away (sorry I had to put that in somewhere) sooner and give in to the relaxation. 
Did I feel any benefits? 
I felt quite invigorated and energised afterwards. I suppose I could say rejuvenated. The following day I did feel that my knees were less painful. Still stiff but not so achy. 
It was interesting to compare notes afterwards with my friend. She said that she felt more calm and sleepy after her session. As with most treatments everyone reacts differenty. 
We went off to Vertigrow for a wander and enjoyed a beautiful lunch.  
All in all, a great day.  
Thank you for such a fantastic gift xx 
Now if you’re still reading this and would like to experience a Floatation Therapy session for yourself or think someone you know would love to try it, Darron at Redmayne Lodge has very kindly said that he will give you 10% discount off a session if you quote the code “Novy10” when booking.  
Why not give it a go? You won’t regret it. If you have any questions or do have a session leave me a message below to let me know. 
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