The Float Tank History That Gets Forgotten

Often associated with hippies, the movie Altered States, alternative therapies with less than scientific explanations, along with some questionable experiments of float founder John Lilly, MD, float tanks don’t always get the respect they deserve.  Many are unaware that this tool John Lilly created has been the start of some astounding research done in Universities all over the United States and the world.

As this is written, the Fibromyalgia Flotation Project has just ended and is being analyzed for the efficacy of flotation as a treatment for those suffering with Fibromyalgia.  The International Flotation Research Group, an informal group of scientists and entrepreneurs interested in Flotation REST, organized this massive research endeavor.

At the LIBR research center there is ongoing clinical testing for how floating affects those with anxiety, PTSD and Anorexia Nervosa.  The initial research showed promising results.


Are you an athlete or a weekend warrior?  This year Northern Illinois University did a study testing the results on recovery post-workout.  The results indicate flotation R.E.S.T. appears to have a significant impact on blood lactate and perceived pain compared to a one hour passive recovery session in untrained healthy males.


Got chronic tension or muscle pain?  The Pain Research & Management Journal published a study showing “Flotation-REST treatment also elevated the participants’ optimism and reduced the degree of anxiety or depression; at nighttime, patients who underwent flotation fell asleep more easily”.

In the last 30 years well designed research has been carried out in teaching hospitals, universities and more to discover how the float tank can change people’s lives.  The reason we have worked to bring float tanks to Nashville is because Float Nashville Founder, Amy Grimes, had a float tank change her life for the better.  You can watch her talk about it HERE.

Whatever your preconceived notion is of floating, we encourage you to look into the science behind it.  The evidence is there.  It works!   Don’t let anything stand in your way of a life that is short of amazing.


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