As some of you would have seen on my Instagram page, last week I tried ‘floating’ for the first time. I had heard some amazing things from people who had tried floating themselves, including a number of people who now do it regularly, and the whole idea of it was so intriguing to me, I just had to give it a go. I honestly had no idea what to expect, whether I would like it or not, but I just knew I wanted to try it!
I had a few of the followers of my page keen to hear how it went, and to be honest the whole experience was so surreal – I felt a comment below a photo would just not do the experience justice. So here I am, blogging away. I should point out upfront that this post is 100% NOT sponsored, so don’t be thinking I’m trying to sell you anything! 😄
The ‘Becalmed Float’ floatation therapy studio in North Beach opened towards the end of last year and having known the owner through my husband I had followed the journey from its inception, development and grand opening through their Instagram page. I think I must have been talking about how amazing it all looked to my mother in law (maybe once or twice!!🙊🙊) as she bought me a voucher to use for my birthday.
I finally booked a late evening session for this last Tuesday, and it was as if the universe was listening as I just had one of ‘those’ days. My kids, who I love dearly, had been driving me mad most of the day. Even in my final moments before departing the house, I zipped for a quick pit stop and in that 12.5 seconds in the bathroom I had Grace banging on the door and Evie sliding her ‘Shopkins’ underneath it, asking whether the ‘carrot’ needed its own house. (I feel like ‘Shopkins’ deserves a post of its own, but ANYWAY!! I digress). I think it’s fair to say I was a smidge frazzled and definitely in need of some self-imposed time out.
I made my way to the studio, and honestly, from the moment I walked in I felt like the experience had begun. The studio itself is SO gorgeous, you can see no expense has been spared in its set up. Every detail is focussed on luxury and relaxation – the decor, the thick sound proof pod rooms, the HUGE pods, the rainwater shower heads, even the choice of shampoos, conditioners, soaps and body washes – all beautiful and top quality!
It’s fair to say the accommodation requirements of the Shopkins carrot was already the furthest thing from my mind! 😄
After filling out some quick paperwork I was taken to my pod room where the gorgeous pod was waiting ready to go. Johanne, the owner, talked me through what to do and what to expect. I was told that the pod was filled with 1000L of water and 500kg of epsom salts(!!) and that it was this solution that would give me the buoyancy to float. I was skeptical having had a huge bowl of beef stroganoff for dinner, but the water didnt look too deep so I knew if I sunk, at least I wouldnt drown. 😂
My pod room had a gorgeous big rainwater shower, place to put my bits and bobs, and of course, the pod itself. The pod looked SO inviting, with the still water rippling only slightly with a couple of low pressure underwater jets and an underwater light which phased through each of the chakra colours. I had a quick shower, popped in my ear plugs and stepped into the pod.
It was the most surreal experience!!
As Johanne had promised, beef stroganoff aside, I did actually float! I couldn’t help it! I bobbed around like a little cork as I quite awkwardly tried to work out how I should lie and where I should put my arms. The water is heated to your skin temperature, so as weird as it sounds it’s as though you can’t even feel it?! And because you are floating and you aren’t touching the walls of base of the pod it is like your sense of touch is turned off. Straaange. You have ear plugs in to stop water running into them so your sense of hearing is muted, and when you close your eyes (or turn off the chakra lights if you choose to) there goes your sense of sight too. Woaahhhh…DO I EVEN EXIST!??!
I thought there was absolutely no way I would turn the lights off in my pod, they were so pretty and I thought I would freak, but within about 10-15 minutes of floating I decided to hit the green button and float in the darkness. (You can hit the button again if darkness ain’t your thang). It was actually amazing. Apart from Ed Sheeran’s ‘Castle on the Hill’ playing on loop in my brain (and let’s be honest with two small children it could have been A LOT worse!), I honestly zoned out quite quickly. It wasn’t long before all I could hear and focus on was my heartbeat and my breathing. It was very ‘yoga-esque’ in terms of personal awareness and connection with self (minus the awkward bending).
The hour went really fast.
Some relaxing music, gentle jets and some dim lighting signalled the end of the session and honestly, I was in my zen place. I came out of the float so relaxed, I wondered if I should actually drive home!! But with my hair washed, a bit of a debrief (apparently it is normal to be a bit uncoordinated the first time round) and a bottle of water, I set off homeward, calling my brother for some hilarious company for the car ride home.
So, my verdict?
TRY IT. For some it will be the most amazing, surreal experience and for others, it might not float your boat (like what I did there?). But regardless of whether you become a regular floater or more of a one-off kinda gal (or guy! who’s discriminating?), at the very least you will be able to say you have experienced ‘nothing’ for a WHOLE HOUR.
When does this happen in our normal lives? Answer: Never. It never happens.
As mums, we come from a world where every one of our senses is stimulated (assaulted?) on a daily basis, often simultaneously. For me, I have two small children who take great pride and pleasure in yelling (a LOT!), climbing on me, invading my personal space, sticking their fingers in my eyes or up my nostrils, expecting me to wipe their tushies regardless of what state they are in, not to mention the incessant showing of all the THINGS (!!). There is honestly so much noise and stimulation in my life that an hour of nothingness was luxury beyond my wildest dreams.
And despite having my sense of hearing, sight and touch muted by earplugs, darkness and 500kg of epson salts respectively, I felt like I could see, hear and feel my thoughts clearer than I have in as long as I can remember.