An increasingly hectic life, a demanding work environment, the big and small worries that keep us awake at night. Anyone of us, at one time or another, will have faced a difficult time and wondered how to reduce stress. Andrea Bosio, Head of Scientific Research at the Mapei Sport Centre, illustrates a useful strategy for everyone, already adopted by many top managers and sports champions.

«The symptoms of stress are anxiety, depression and insomnia, which in the most serious cases lead to burnout syndrome (from the English expression ‘to burn out’, meaning ‘to exhaust oneself’), characterised by sleep disturbances, gastric disorders and early fatigue. Among the methods for combating stress, today I want to illustrate you the floating» says the expert from the Olgiate Olona Research Centre in this episode of Cubetti di Gloria.

Clearly this is not simply floating in a swimming pool or bath tub. It is a technique in which an attempt is made to implement a restriction of environmental stimulation. In a special sensory deprivation tank like the one in the Varese centre, the person spends a variable amount of time, which can be longer than 60′, in a dark and soundproof environment. This method allows deep relaxation; there is scientific evidence showing that its continued use can lead to a decrease in stress, depression, anxiety, improved sleep quality and optimism.

The expert explains why floating can also be useful for those who practise sport: «In the training process, which is stressful by nature, given the stimuli we subject our physique to in each session to make it improve, the recovery phase is fundamental and floating can be a valuable ally. The results of research carried out in the sporting field show that it can lead to an improvement in the quality of sleep, less perception of muscular pain and a small recovery in jumping and sprinting performance compared with normal rest. At Mapei Sport, we are carrying out research in these months to assess how the athlete can benefit from it in terms of recovery and improved performance, so we hope to be able to give you further indications on this soon».