For anyone who has never heard of floating, sensory deprivation or isolation tanks; at first may think this could be some sort of torture device. But it could not be anything further from that. Really. This experience is a relaxing way to completely disconnect from all forms of external input - no cell phones, no tvs, no light, no sound and no gravity! The water is infused with Epsom salts (which really isn't salt) to twice the density of the Dead Sea and the temperature is just warm enough so that you lose the sense of where you end and the water begins as you float. Your mind can disconnect, leaving your body to relax and be released from the pressure of gravity and the outside world. It's magical. It's healing. It's meditation on super speed.
I've floated three times prior to my first visit at FloatLife so I had mixed preconceived notions. I had been watching their website and Facebook feeds for updates and jumped at the chance to order a discounted 3-float pack to celebrate their opening. Finally, after construction/inspections delays their doors opened on September 11th and I was booked in to float the following Sunday.
Once inside the centre it was quite apparent that they were brand spanking new. I assumed signage and general décor is on its way as it is an open blank slate just waiting for some love. For the few minutes I waited in the reception area it became abundantly clear that there is plenty of interest in floating here in Calgary. There was one fellow looking to purchase a gift certificate for a friend, another guy just wanting to learn more about the centre and a couple in which the boyfriend was floating and the girlfriend dropping him off just wanted to check the place out. It was a bit hectic for the two good looking owners, Dustin and Isaac, who were a tad sleep deprived from finalizing pre-opening details and the onslaught of interest in their business. Nonetheless, I could tell they were passionate about what they have created and I was excited to get in the tank.
After a quick tour/briefing of the space with Isaac I was ready to float. I requested 5-minutes of music to begin the float as I was given the option of none, five or 10 minutes which was an unexpected happy surprise. Just prior to getting in I wondered if the music was even playing, however, once I closed the door, turned off the light and laid down with my ears under water I could hear the melodic drums clearly. Next thing I knew I realized the music had stopped but wasn't sure how long it had been since it had ended. There were a few moments of muscle twitching and I was consciously feeling my body relax, letting go of the tension in my neck and hips. It took a while to completely be calm as time is impossible to gauge - could've been a few minutes could've been over 30 minutes. Then, as if I travelled through time and space, the music quietly started playing again indicating my 90 minutes of float time were up. I reached up behind my head, touched the overhead door to get an idea of where I was and slowly came back to reality. Once showered, dressed and fixing my hair at the end of the hall prep area (FloatLife even offers a great hairdryer with diffuser - good call, fellas!) I headed to the reception area and shared my experience with Dustin and a few people who were waiting to check out the place.
I truly love the floating experience, have already booked my next appointment and am confident that the guys at FloatLife are able to get a good foot hold in to this business in Calgary. I truly believe everyone can benefit from this experience. With plenty of glass towers in the downtown core and major roads filled with stressed out people FloatLife could not have opened soon enough.
So now to you, my lovely Experimental Approach readers! Have you tried floating/sensory deprivation/isolation tanks before? Have you booked in to FloatLife yet? Do you have any other questions about my experience? Please let me know through the comments as I would love to hear from you!