The Science of Letting Go With Glenn Stokoe
“We store so much energy, not only in our psychology but in our muscular-skeletal system that when we float, our body gets to unwind and just finally take that breath it's been craving so much.” – Joe Rogan
Meditation has been studied for centuries as a powerful tool that supports us in letting go of what doesn't serve our growth.
With traditional meditation however, it can take years to reach the clarity and inner peace we desire. With a new modality of healing called “floating,” you can reach a state of ultimate relaxation with just a few sessions.
Floating is not only a great empowering tool to help lift our spirits and clear our thoughts, but it is also fun and can allow us to bring more creativity into our lives.
Whether you suffer from stress, cloudy thinking, or chronic pain, floating is for everyone and it can help us let go of everything in order to simply just “be.”
The Science of Letting Go
On this week’s podcast, floating and sensory deprivation expert, Glenn Stokoe, shares his personal experience with meditation and why floating creates the perfect environment to deepen a mediation practice that helps the body and mind to recover, align and fully relax.
As the founder of Float North County in San Diego, California, Glenn has helped numerous athletes and spiritual seekers recover from pain and clear their minds.
Since his first float in 2013, Glenn's personal exploration in floating has included completing sessions that have lasted up to 3 hours and his own 30 day journey of floating and meditation.
If you want to recover from chronic pain, improve your athletic performance, or re-energize your mind and body, floating can help you rediscover yourself and let go of anything that is holding you back.
What is a Float Studio?
At a float studio, the floating experience takes place in an enclosed space that looks similar to a large hot tub. The floating tank is about 8 feet long by 5 feet wide and can be between 5-7 feet in height. The tank is filled with 1,1oo pounds of Epsom salt which is made up of magnesium sulfate that allows you to float effortlessly in just 11 inches of water.
The water's temperature is set to match the temperature of your skin so that you're completely balanced and it feels like you're floating in almost nothing.
A lot of people who are claustrophobic may be hesitant to try floating, but once they're in the large tank, they find that they feel fine in the water. Floating effortlessly in warm water in an enclosed space can bring a lot of comfort to us.
In addition, the Epsom magnesium salts keeps you completely buoyant so it's very easy to float and just let go of everything that you're feeling. You don't have to worry about water getting on your face or into your eyes.
Watch the video below with Wellness Force Founder, Josh Trent, as he interviews Glenn Stokoe live at the float studio:
Who Visits Float Studios?
When you're in float tank, you're in an environment where you're not affected by gravity and you're absorbing all the magnesium from Epsom salts. This is perfect to help your body recover and relax.
Many professional teams including the Golden State Warriors and the Chicago Cubs now have their own float tanks. They have found that floating helps their athletes visualize for upcoming games, recover fast from injuries, and help re-evaluate what they did during the last game to make a real mind and body connection.
According to Glenn, these float tanks can be your best, personal, development tool because you can easily listen to your mind and body. If you can learn to be sensitive and pay attention to what is going on with your body, then it can alert you to whether or not a future injury may happen and you can actively prevent it from occurring.
How Much Time Should You Spend in a Float Tank?
According to Glenn, 90 minutes is the perfect amount of time to spend in a float tank.
Now you may be asking yourself, “Isn't 90 minutes a lot of time to spend all by yourself in just water?”
To help you get into a state of complete relaxation, 90 minutes is key to allow your body and mind to reach a circadian state of rhythm (at 45 minutes). When you first try floating, 90 minutes may seem like a lot, but some people actually prefer and benefit from floating for over 2.5 hours.
Depending on why you attend floating sessions and whether it's for chronic pain or anxiety and stress, how often you go during the first sessions can differ from person to person. If you float for chronic pain, it's recommended that you go 8-9 times over the course of 3 weeks. If you float for anxiety and stress, you should go 6-7 times over 2 weeks for results.
Once you've gotten into a rhythm of spending time in a floating tank, you don't have to go as often, but you should try to go on a regular basis for ongoing results that can benefit your life. This may be anywhere from 2 times a week to once a month depending on your reason for going and how much you need it.
How Can Floating Help You to Let Go?
“Consciousness is knowing that we're a force and we get to direct our force by choice.” – Josh Trent
According to Glenn, it's natural that the first float won't be the most productive float for you. Your thoughts can be in another place because everything is so new and you're brain is so focused on taking it all in. However, each time you float, you'll be able to relax your body and mind faster to reach a higher state of meditation because your brain and body will be accustomed to being in the float tank.
“Negative thoughts can overtake your thinking and your ego can take over because you're amazed by what you're doing, but floating lets you ultimately shut that out completely because all you can hear is your own breath and your heartbeat. Simply letting go is a very big part of the floating experience. You have to enter the float tank knowing that you're not going to control the float, but to just let go.” – Glenn Stokoe
Not only have athletes found floating tanks to be extremely helpful, but people who suffer from chronic pain, stress, and symptoms such as PTSD have walked away from their first session feeling amazing.
If you're overloaded by work, many have found that a float tank allows for clearer thinking for ideas. Instead of spending time overthinking about a situation to find a solution, a float tank can naturally help you have new ideas and “aha” moments because you've allowed yourself to let go.
“How can we create as human beings if we're constantly reacting to what we're receiving and we can't respond to it?” – Josh Trent
What You'll Hear on the Show
Wellness Force Show Opening
3:00 Introduction to Glenn Stokoe
4:00 Why did you form Float North County? What was your journey?
7:00 What is floating?
8:30 How did you set up your floating center business? Did you have a mentor?
10:15 How does floating benefit the science of letting go? How can a person benefit from their first floating experience?
13:20 Have you found for average people..do they feel wired and energized after they float? How many floats does it take?
15:45 What does this feeling of being weightless doing for the central nervous system, mind, and body?
18:05 How does floating help athletes? Does it benefit them in a different way than for other people?
22:10 How can floating help our brain and body synchronize?
23:30 How can long floats (2-3 hours) help us with personal development and meditation
25:30 How can our cortisol levels be reduced by floating?
27:25 How do people use floating to let go of stress and anxiety?
29:15 What can people do to make floating a regular practice for them?
32:00 Why should people float for 90 minutes compared to 60 minutes?
33:10 What surprises people the most about floating?
37:00 How will the floating industry grow in the future?
38:10 7 Fast for 7 Questions
43:30 Closing Remarks by Josh and Glenn
Resources Mentioned In The Show
- Float North County
- Wellness Force visits Float North County
- The Float Confernce
- Joe Rogan of Onnit
- Aubrey Marcus
- The Laureate Institute for Brain Research and the International Journal of Stress Management on Floating
- The Laureate Institute for Brain Research home
- Cortisol Levels-Where to Float
Listen To Glenn Share
- His experiences with floating and meditation.
- How he created Float North County.
- What its like for someone to try floating for the first time.
- Why floating tanks are okay for people with claustrophobia or other fears.
- How floating can help heal the body and mind.
- The different benefits of floating.
- How long should you float for and how often?
- Who floats and why do they float?
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About The Author, Lauren Bryant, Podcast Production
is the Podcasting Assistant and Show Notes Writer for Wellness + Wisdom. She has a BBA in both Marketing and Spanish for Business as well as certificates in Advanced Business Communications and International Business from the University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire.
Lauren’s wellness journey began at a young age when she joined her local YMCA swim team, The Wave, of La Crosse, WI. One of the most profound views on wellness that anyone has said to her was when she was an assistant swim coach for that same YMCA swim team.
One day during a practice, former head swim coach, Jon Brenner, shared with her that the most important thing about coaching the swimmers was that “It doesn’t matter if they become the best athletes in the world. What’s important is that we give them the tools and guidance they need to live a healthy, active lifestyle for the rest of their lives.”
Since hearing those words, she has taken it to heart to not only focus on continuously living her own healthy lifestyle, but to help others pursue their wellness goals as well.
Lauren is not only an avid swimmer, but a fan of running, yoga, cooking, and doing any activity outside that involves being surrounded by nature. In the Fall of 2014, she completed a long-awaited goal of walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain.
According to Lauren, wellness is about finding gratitude and joy in doing any type of physical or self-care activity that we love. Wellness means providing ourselves with self-love, good nutrition, and the inner peace that our individual minds and bodies need.