I first became interested in trying flotation therapy after hearing about it on several podcasts. I found out the nearest location for me to float is the NeuroFitness Wellness Center in Southfield, MI. On Black Friday, I purchased two 90-minute flotation sessions for myself. There were also 60-minute sessions available, but I was feeling ambitious. The discounted cost was $55 each for a total of $110.
- I was given a room with a flotation tank and attached bathroom. I was able to lock the door of the room.
- I took a shower before and after going in the tank.
- I made sure my earplugs were in very securely before going into the tank.
- Sound options: There was a button on the inside of the tank which either made it completely silent or played relaxing music.
- Light options: There was a button on the inside of the tank which either made it completely dark or provided some soft light.
- You know your time slot for the float is over when the light turns on in the tank (and it goes silent, if you previously had music playing).
My First Float (January 2016):
I scheduled this float session a couple days before my first powerlifting meet because I thought it would help me de-stress. The sensation of being in the tank felt really cool, and I took it as an opportunity to do some stretching. However, I had a difficult time staying still, settling my mind, and getting into a state of relaxation. I couldn’t stop thinking about a rescue dog that I had just applied for shortly before coming to my float. I felt distracted, wide awake, and I couldn’t quiet my mind. I got salt water in my eyes and mouth which was unpleasant. I also had to blow my nose, which was not possible. Towards the very end of my float I was able to find a very comfortable place, but it did not last that long before the float was over. My ear plugs were not in securely enough, and this caused me to get some water in my ears. Because of this, I also had some sinus pressure issues the next couple of days.
My Second Float (April 2016):
I did not schedule this float for any special occasion; I just wanted to relax. I made sure that my earplugs were in very securely before getting into the tank this time, which saved me from any sinus pressure issues. I made sure to blow my nose as much as possible before going into the tank as well. When I was ready to get still, I did some slow breathing and counting my breath which helped me reach a calmer state. This time, I was able to get myself into a long state of deep relaxation and it felt incredible. I came out of the float feeling extremely tranquil, relaxed, and rejuvenated. My drive home was full of rain and traffic, but it did not stress me out even in the slightest because I was just so relaxed!
I think that flotation is something that does take practice. It took me a while to get used to being in the tank and become comfortable enough to allow myself to fall into a completely relaxed state. I would recommend at least trying some form of meditation prior to getting in the tank for the first time. Because I was in a better state of mind, my second float was much better than my first one. I think it helped that I was a bit more tired during my second float and less stressed out in general. My first float seemed to drag on because I could not completely relax, but time flew by during my second float. I would definitely recommend trying flotation therapy as another way to achieve relaxation and practice meditation. It is fantastic simply because it deprives you of all external stimuli, forcing you to slow down and just do nothing.