I recently took a trip over to Healing One here in Reno for a sensory deprivation float. What once sounded like a strange experience to me, was now something that I could readily try — and I was seriously so excited. I am a total sci-fi nerd and had seen these types of tanks or experiences portrayed in shows such as Fringe and Stranger Things, but I didn’t even realize that these places existed for the average Joe, let alone did I know how beneficial they are for our bodies.
The practice of floating has been shown to enhance muscle recovery, musculoskeletal awareness, immune function, and enhance stress resistance. Even more awesome is that our stress hormone, cortisol, has been shown to be reduced for long periods after floats. Every mom needs this, right?!?! Oh, and also, did you know pregnant moms can float? There’s even a special position for pregnant mommas to rest in to relieve all of the baby’s weight off of the mother!
I scheduled my first float in Healing One’s Oasis Float Suite. I was nervous and excited and had no clue what to expect. This room offers a float tank with a door to close yourself in. And no, this door cannot be locked (you were wondering, right?). With one hour to myself to just relax and float, I showered in the private shower and hopped into the tank. While I could sit down after climbing in, as soon as I leaned back the salt water lifted me right up into a float. Soft music plays for about 10 minutes to help you settle in, and then the tank is silent, dark, and nice and warm. The float lasted for 60 minutes, with soft music turning on toward the end. You get out, shower, and then can enjoy some tea in the lounge.
I left my first float experience feeling relaxed and calm. It was an interesting experience, to say the least. The best part was that the relaxed feeling I left with lasted for DAYS. I immediately felt like I needed to go back one more time now that I knew what to expect and wouldn’t be so nervous.
I booked my second float in the Ascension Float Suite so I could see what this one was like, too. If you follow Reno Mom’s Blog on Facebook, you probably saw my Facebook Live video touring the room. The room, in my opinion, is a much better choice for people who cannot handle closed-in or small spaces. This room’s tank is much more spacious, and the room feels a bit more “spa” like (not that the Oasis float tank was bad — I thought it was quite nice as well). The door is on a wall (like a shower door) instead of angling down on top of the tank, and the float space itself is more like a giant bathtub, extending all the way up to the ceiling. This float space offers colored lights, which can be changed, left on the whole time, or turned off. You are in control of the lighting. Like the first experience, calm music helps you to settle in, and then slowly fades out for a relaxing float experience.
While I think this float room may be the best option for those who are nervous about being closed into a tank or those who do not want it completely dark, I personally preferred the float tank from my first trip. I found myself being way too playful in the bigger tank, changing the lights, pushing off the walls, etc. While I still had an incredibly relaxing experience, I felt that the Oasis tank helped me to better relax and focus on my thoughts and process life.The next time I go in (oh yes, there will be a next time!) I will be choosing the original float tank for myself. I do have friends who prefer the Ascension tank, though. So I think it’s worth trying out both spaces to see which one fits you best.
To help you out, here are the five things I wondered (ahem, freaked out about) my first time.
1. What if I fall asleep? Can I drown? I totally fell asleep. Or something like sleep. I found the tanks allowed me to really relax and process things in my life. At some point, I found myself not quite awake. The salt in the water allows you to stay buoyant, and you will not sink. I did have a momentary panic when I woke up and didn’t know where I was right away, but quickly remembered I was floating and settled back in.
2. Does the music stop? What if it plays the whole time and I don’t know when to get out? What if I over-stay? So either I have just a wild and ridiculous imagination, or you’re wondering the same thing, too. The first time in the tank, I felt like the music played FOREVER, and it made me so nervous. I didn’t realize it was just 10 minutes. In my “forever-ness” of music, I was worried it wouldn’t go off and I would not know to get out. But alas, keep in mind, the music will go off after 10 minutes, and then resume at the end of your float to let you know your time is up.
3. Can anyone lock you in? No. There is no lock on the tank door. Plus, you are in a private room in which YOU lock the main door. No one can come in there anyway.
4. What if I have to go to the bathroom? Hop out, throw on the robe and sandals provided, and head to the bathroom. The float room offers a bathroom right out the door. The float tank also has a bathroom nearby, but it is closer to the front of the facility.
5. Is it clean? The water is fully filtered three times between each float. So yes, definitely clean!
If you have any questions about floating, I highly recommend reaching out to the Healing One staff. They are incredibly helpful and kind and will answer any questions you might have. Sometime soon, their third float room will open, so be sure to check that one out as well.
Check out the instructions on Facebook for how to enter to win a float for FREE! If you don’t win the free float, keep in mind that through the end of December, you can also buy three floats and get the fourth float free. I did this for a Christmas gift for my husband and myself, and I am so excited to go back and float again!