“It’s just that I am feeling so heavy, cumbersome and sore this pregnancy that I would love to feel weightless if only for an hour.”
As always, check with your health care provider first, for any conditions that might be specific to you. Many women, though, report that they find wonderful relief from the stress of pregnancy in a tank. The dense Epsom salt-laden water gently takes up all the unaccustomed weight you’re bearing, and gives respite to your strained joints.
“I was eight months pregnant when I floated for the first time. Pregnancy takes a toll on every muscle in your body, especially your torso. Ironically, the times when you get a chance to rest is when the baby becomes more active and its weight continues to put stress on your muscles. While floating, I expected the baby to be very active, but was pleasantly surprised. Since there was no pressure from any side, the baby didn’t feel the need to kick or roll around. It was the best rest I’ve had in several months. I would recommend floating to anyone, pregnant or not, for a time of physical and mental renewal.”
(Heather Warren, Oakland, CA)
Here’s a thing I’ve learned through all the reading I’ve been doing about floating: the body has a relaxation response as the physiological counterpart to the fight-or-flight response. I was surprised — I hadn’t heard of this before — and then that thought was almost instantly followed by “of course it does”.
Fight-or-flight is well known, and had been extensively studied for almost a century. The body responds to perceived threat or danger with a reflex that releases hormones like adrenalin and cortisol, speeding the heart rate, slowing digestion, shunting blood flow to major muscle groups, and changing various other autonomic nervous functions. This gives the body a burst of energy and strength to defend ourselves under physical attack.
The shifts triggered by the adrenalin and cortisol are hard on the body — they’re supposed to be an emergency reaction, not the normal state of being. The body expects that after running or fighting, we’ll stop and rest and relax, giving it a chance to clean up. But unfortunately for us, the modern world frequently supplies stressful situations that trigger fight-or-flight where neither fight nor flight is a reasonable response, and where we also don’t get a clear time to stop.
Warning: if you enter a float tank, you will certainly experience every one of these things shown below, probably simultaneously. As is well known, TV is invariably accurate, scrupulous, and truthful in every respect. To sign up to be experimented upon have a soothing spiritual experience, join our mailing list.