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Making Headlines


Pioneer in floatation therapy in Ireland and Northern Ireland, Vivian McKinnon, was invited to present a talk on her new therapy technique at a global conference in Portland, Oregon.

The ‘Float Con’ Conference took place recently and brought together practitioners and specialists in floatation, pool and spa and many other similar techniques.

Vivian has a floatation therapy centre in Dundonald and combines floatation with other therapeutic techniques through her company Hydro-ease.

Her talk focused on RAFT – her Reconnection and Floatation Therapy – that combines floatation with the ‘Havening Technique’, amongst others.

The Belfast based practitioner said she was “delighted” to get the opportunity to bring her innovative RAFT technique to a global audience.

“This is an approach to remove the emotional drivers and triggers that hold us back in life, from a loss of motivation to a lack of resilience I support people to ‘wake up’ and live instead of just existing” she added.

Vivian’s approach is exclusive to Hydro-ease in Belfast and is delivered by Vivian herself who is a highly skilled, qualified and experienced therapeutic practitioner.

As well as her Belfast-based face to face work the reconnection therapy is also available and delivered all over the world via skype/zoom.

At Float Con Vivian had the opportunity to explain the details of Hydro-ease’s RAFT to a worldwide gathering of practitioners.

“To be able to explain the technique at Float Con was a delight and the reception was amazing,” said Vivian. “What we have developed at Hydro-Ease is a suite of therapies and techniques that help people in so many ways.

“Of these, RAFT with the Havening Technique, which I was introduced to by Paul McKenna, has so much potential, and is already proving its worth on a daily basis.”

RAFT sessions are available from Hydro-ease: 1-1 sessions can be engaged with at a time that suits both the practitioner and the guest.

While already an experienced therapist the chance to attend the annual Float Conference in 2016 cemented Vivian’s passion for the therapy.

“I was in awe of the organisation and planning that goes into this global event,” she said. “And having just returned from the Float Con I can honestly say I am yet again blown away by this fantastic industry.”

While Vivian was delighted to be able to showcase RAFT and the havening technique she revealed there was many other opportunities.

“The whole weekend I listened with intent and absorbed the energy and enthusiasm of every speaker, everyone spoke with passion and evidence into why this industry is on the verge of a tipping point.

“We heard about the benefits of using floatation with anxiety, and how bloods taken before and after just one float was suggesting the huge potential in raising the immune system of people living with anxiety leading to a reduced heart-rate resulting in a reduction in anxiety. There were findings around evolution and why humans have crooked teeth explaining the lost art and science of breathing.”

The Floatation Therapy Association of China presented research being carried out in China and the growth of the industry over there, while a Microbiologist and water illness expert give his findings on respiratory, dermal and gastrointestinal risk of infectious diseases and how the risks ranged from close to zero to very, very close to zero.”

But for Vivian the most heart-warming story came from Juliet Tango Mylan who experienced a deep introspective moment while floating at Float On (hosts of the conference).

“Juliet revealed that floating helped her to realise that she wasn’t the gender she was assigned at birth, she spoke candidly and openly about the challenges with her transition and the unwavering love and support she received from the most open, honest and supportive community she found herself within providing her with clarity and purpose for the future.”

And, to follow on from the success at Float Con Vivian will be welcoming floatation consultant Johnny Rinaldo who is coming to the Northern Ireland from Portland for five months to share his knowledge and understanding of the industry from working at the epicentre of it for the several years.

This article featured in on 9 October.