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Northern Ireland's Original Floatation Centre
Hydro-Ease owner "Vivian McKinnon" standing beside a poster of her exclusive RAFT Trauma Recovery program
The logo for the Hydro-Ease blog "The magic is within you"

RAFT Trauma Recovery

Through its Recovery/Reconnection and Floatation Therapy (RAFT) programme Hydro-ease practices an exclusive and revolutionary new approach to trauma recovery and emotional regulation by creating ‘person centred’ pathways to a better life. There is no other known service like it.

It can help with emotional and psychological trauma, anxiety, fears and phobias, depression, PTSD, grief, guilt and shame, anger and rage, insomnia and sleep issues, compulsions, addictions, self-esteem and confidence issues, craving and emotional eating as well as relief from chronic pain.

Otherwise known as Reconnection, Recovery and Floatation Therapy, this service is unique to Hydro-ease because it is built upon Vivian McKinnon’s personal life experiences of a traumatic childhood and the professional skills and qualifications she developed in later life.

This approaches uses the best elements of Havening Therapy, Hypnosis and Clinical Hypnotherapy, Neuro Linguistic Programming, Time Line Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, SPECRTUM Coaching and a dedicated Smart Recovery programme to assist in overcoming addictive behaviours and trauma recovery.

It is carried out in unison with floatation therapy helping clients to construct pathways to a better life through restriction in external stimuli and latest approaches in neuroscience.

The first sixty minutes is spent one-to-one with Vivian, a highly qualified, skilled and experienced holistic change specialist. This is followed by an hour of floatation to consolidate the therapeutic value and learning of what has just taken place.

We also offer a free 30 minute consultation where you can have a chat with Vivian to find out what RAFT can do for you.

Hydro-Ease owner "Vivian McKinnon" delivering her exclusive RAFT Trauma Recovery program
Hydro-Ease owner Vivian McKinnon engaging in a RAFT Trauma Recovery session with a client using the Havening Technique
A women floating in the Blue floatation cabin as a part of Hydro-Ease's exclusive RAFT trauma recovery program
Hydro-Ease owner "Vivian McKinnon" delivering her exclusive RAFT Trauma Recovery program
Hydro-Ease owner Vivian McKinnon engaging in a RAFT Trauma Recovery session with a client using the Havening Technique
A women floating in the Blue floatation cabin as a part of Hydro-Ease's exclusive RAFT trauma recovery program

RAFT is different because it deals with the root cause of the unhelpful coping or avoidance strategies. It works with the electrical, magnetic and chemical circuits of the mind and body to remove and replace the emotion and physical drivers.

The first part of RAFT can be delivered ‘content free.’ This means that unlike traditional talking therapies, the client does not have to verbally repeat traumatic experiences or even to have to recall them.

It works by interrupting the neuro circuits that keep these responses active, re-routing the neuropathways and inviting the mind into delta wave activity which is associated with deep restful sleep.

Floatation follows therapeutic treatment where the client is afforded a zero gravity and restricted external stimulation experience enabling the mind and body to become fully relaxed promoting deep change and a shift in life realisations.

Sessions last two hours although clients are advised to schedule 2.5 hours out of their day.

Vivian believes the recovery and reconnection process is unique to every individual and has developed a ‘person centred’ approach to help clients ‘move away from pain and towards pleasure.’

Click the button below to book your 30 minute consultation now!

Hydro-Ease past visitor Sarah Jane Toner who successfully completed our RAFT Trauma Recovery program

Sarah-Jane Toner

In the middle of a very stressful final year of University studying fashion and design and suffering some mental health issues where my thoughts and behaviours had become obsessive, a family member recommended I give Hydro-ease a try.

What can I say? This place is amazing. I left feeling lighter about my stress and worries and this feeling stayed with me for days! By the time it came round to my next float I was buzzing with excitement. Floatation helped to ground and allow me to regain focus as I was always on the go and my head constantly all over the place.

The team are extraordinary and so supportive beyond their day jobs. Even after my third and final float, I was surprised and delighted when Viv and Judith came to support me at my final year show. This proves Hydro-ease truly care about the individual beyond floating! I couldn't recommend this place or the team highly enough. Now that I've finished my studies I look forward to getting back to float and refocus once again!


At first I was resistant to the idea of going to Hydro-Ease and taking part in the RAFT sessions. I thought what is this and how could it possibly help me? It was my negativity speaking. It had become so ingrained over previous years of alcohol abuse I had not fully accepted I needed help to overcome my addiction.

Over time I came to realise that during our one-to-one sessions Viv was planting seeds of change in my mind. Floatation afterwards helped grow those seeds like a plant being watered until I realised I could make different choices.

Hydro-Ease is such a lovely calming space that really helps you think and focus on what you need to do to get to a happier place in life. I can’t recommend the RAFT sessions with Viv highly enough. She is someone who has experienced so much herself and understands the pain you’re coming from.

At no point did I feel judged or feel that what I was saying would seem silly to her. Out of every person I spoke to on my journey to try and live better, no one has helped me more to see things in a different way and truly helped me look inside and find the tools to help myself.

She does not ever point you in a direction as in you should do this or that. She helps you realise in yourself the things you already know but had repressed or didn’t feel able to change because after all the only person who can ever really change your thinking is you.

The RAFT sessions unlocked so much that I didn’t properly face before. I always left feeling calmer, more thoughtful and able to see things in a more constructive forward looking way. Best thing I ever did on my journey of recovery was the time I spent talking with Viv and the float sessions to help process my thoughts.

Joanne Moore

After having our son in 2016, I went through quite a lot of health issues. It was hard but we then wanted to try for our 2nd child. This takes us back to 2017… and took us up to September 2020! 3 years passed with no positive tests, or even a feeling we would conceive. Numerous doctor appointments, a laparoscopy, fertility tests, 2 failed IVFs and crazy amounts of money spent on anything that would or might help. This is something that you never think you will go though, and nothing ever prepares you for it. From doctors to counsellors to fertility specialists no one could tell me how to fix it! My body was failing me and it was totally out of my control. My body has suffered so many traumas. Was I able to control it… no: could I fix it?.. no! The answer was always no.

Bringing us to 2020, our second failed IVF in July, and wondering where we go. I started going to reflexology in August – specialist fertility reflexology – which gave me comfort and was definitely helping me mentally. I was training with my Pt Phil Stoops, concentrating on strength, conditioning and keeping my head focused. It was Phil who introduced me to ‘Hydro Ease!’ Why don’t you try Floatation therapy! I had never heard of it, so having tried everything my answer was always why not!

I arrived and was introduced to Vivian. I had an hour-long consultation with her. To say this would have a lasting affect on me is an understatement. Having had so much trauma she, in an hour, totally changed my focus and way of thinking! I had never processed what had happened to me over the last 4 years the way she showed it to me. No one else had been able to do that for me! I honestly finished that hour seeing everything in a completely different way! I then had an hour float, and the one thing that stands in my mind was when I came out. Vivian asked me how it was and I simply couldn’t find any words. My brain had shut off. I had no memory of feeling this way before, no memory to recall.

Anyway, this was 8th October and I found out that I was pregnant on 2nd November! Was it just fate? Was it just science?! I really believe in my heart that my experience at Hydro Ease played a part in what we can only call as a complete blessing! This experience will stay with me forever and be something I continue to do in keeping mind and body healthy.