Discover the Calming Effect of Lying on the Floor

Written by Camilla Jessen

Mar.08 - 2024 11:53 AM CET

Uncover why lying on the floor is gaining popularity as a simple way to reduce stress and feel grounded.

Trending Now

Josh Patner, a Brooklyn resident, shares a lifelong affinity for spending time on the floor, a habit he inherited from his parents. For Patner, the floor is not just a place to stretch and soothe his back due to scoliosis but also a sanctuary for calming his mind.

"If I know you well enough to sit on your couch, I know you well enough to lie on your floor," he asserts. 

The #floortime trend on TikTok, with millions of views, suggests that Patner isn't alone.

People everywhere are discovering the therapeutic benefits of floor time. Lily Bishop, a graduate student in Chicago, shares her floor moments on social media, likening the experience to the tranquility of watching ocean waves.

I am a floor person to my core," Bishop explains. "I find it makes me more relaxed and present."

The Scientific Reason

Psychologists affirm that there's merit to this trend, even in the absence of extensive research.

Ellen Hendriksen, a clinical psychologist, notes that lying flat on your back can foster an open, relaxed posture, potentially enhancing your mood. The physical act of grounding can interrupt the cycle of rumination, offering a pause in our otherwise non-stop culture, adds Alan Fogel, a professor emeritus of psychology.

Fogel elaborates that lying on the floor demands a softening of muscles and a focus on bodily sensations, which can aid in mental decompression.

This practice is not new; it has historical roots in various cultures and practices, including yoga's savasana, Zen meditation, and the traditional Korean ondol heating system, which encourages floor-based activities.

However, floor time isn't suitable for everyone, particularly those with physical limitations. For those who can and want to explore its benefits, Rachel Goldman, a psychologist, recommends focusing inward and paying attention to any feelings of relaxation or grounding.

Kara Lennon, an indoor cycling instructor, likens her floor time to taking a brief sunbath.

Ms. Lennon acknowledged, "It might seem silly," but "It's pressing the reset button for a second."