Several days after gingerly stepping into the Infinity Float suite at Q Flatiron for the first time and letting go all inhibitions, I had a breakthrough. Energized by that initial “sensory deprivation experience” at the holistic enclave in Manhattan’s bustling commercial district, what followed was a heightened sense of calm and clarity amid the buzz of city life.
New Age skepticism aside, neuroscientists and researchers have noted the metaphysical and therapeutic benefits of floating for decades in treating addiction, anxiety, depression and more. Floatation therapy also has been cited for improving circulation and concentration, eliminating toxins, lowering blood pressure, relieving stress, reducing jet lag and boosting creativity.
Personally, it offered relief from the chronic pain, swelling and stiffness associated with severe rheumatoid arthritis. Though unsure of what to expect once the lights went down and complete silence filled the spacious float room, I welcomed being blissfully buoyant in a body-temperature solution of Epsom salt for an hour. Eventually, inner chatter quieted as my muscles relaxed and unwarranted fears subsided.
Noran Malouf, natural integrative health care provider and skilled diagnostician, recalls his initial reaction 20 years ago at Blue Light Floatation in New York. It put him on a life-altering path. “The first float is always interesting,” explains Malouf. “It’s different for everyone. I had many injuries to my knee and all the stress I was holding on to … I felt the tension release.”
Currently, Malouf devotes time and energy to encouraging deeper states of relaxation and meaningful mind-body-spirit connections at Q Flatiron. In addition to Infinity Float, other services available include crystal healing therapy and color therapy. Instant gratification often takes priority in our high-strung society, but attitudes are changing. “Your ego is so over-rattled with stimuli. We’re plugged into everything,” Malouf says. “People are realizing they’ve got to go inward for healing. It’s not in a book or on TV… it’s about time people wake up to their own sovereignty.”
Prior to float sessions, an attentive staff gives clients a tour of the float room and a few guidelines to ensure a memorable experience. Expect to spend about two hours while there _ 15 minutes to shower before and afterward (towels, soap, shampoo and silicone ear plugs provided). And, allow yourself at least 10 minutes to savor a cup of herbal tea in the cozy lounge area before racing back to reality.
APRIL SPECIAL: Q Flatiron is offering a 1-hour float session for $50 with mention of Natural Awakenings.
Learn more at QFlatiron.com/InfinityFloat.
Tania Fuentez is a freelance writer for Natural Awakenings.