by Jamie Lewis | photo by Jenn George
Zane Ritter, who studied biology and psychology at UT Chattanooga, discovered floating while researching post-concussive syndrome and therapeutic methods to help with healing. Intrigued, he attended a float conference in Portland, Oregon, and began a plan that culminated in East Nashville’s newest float center and alternative therapy spa. Located just off 10th Avenue in the Five Points neighborhood, Float Horizen offers a very unique experience that may well be just what you need in your life.
Float therapy has been around since the ’50s, but first began to gain popularity in the ’70s when it became known as Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy (REST). From then to now, much research has been done into the effectiveness of floating from both physical and mental standpoints. Studies have found floating reduces stress hormones, decreases blood pressure and increases theta waves (the same waves that increase during dream sleep and meditation).
So just what is float therapy?
As you would imagine, it involves floating effortlessly in a small body of water that has been saturated with Epsom salts. Float Horizen offers two types of floatation rooms, a DreamPod V2 which fully encapsulates the user, and the vastly more open Wave Rooms which provide all of the same benefits, just with higher ceilings. The rooms are indirectly lit with colored lighting which can be changed to suit a user’s mood or be turned off entirely, creating a true sensory deprivation experience. Showers and towels are provided so re-entry into the outside world can be achieved easily.
Giving it a try
“So, would you like to float?”
When Zane asked me this, I have to admit I was a bit nervous. I felt that in the interest of science it was only proper that I give it a go, but my fear of tight spaces made me nervous. I decided to give a Wave Room a shot and see, figuring if all else failed I could just get out. After showering and putting in the provided earplugs, I hopped into the enclosure while some traditional oriental music played. After five minutes the music cut off and I was left with the sound of my own breathing. I found that turning the light entirely off caused my brain to lose all conception of distance and space. I felt like I was floating through an endless expanse of water for an indefinite period of time. When my float was finished, I felt incredible, like I had just been given a full body massage. I found myself smiling for no particular reason. In short, it was amazing.
In addition to float therapy, Float Horizen also offers Salt and Harmonic Sound Therapy. Stop by and see for yourself, Floating may be just what you have been looking for. Don’t let fear get in the way. If I can do it, so can you!
Float therapy is offered at Float Horizen, located in East Nashville at 10th Avenue. They also offer salt therapy, harmonic sound therapy and yoga sessions.
To schedule your appointment, call 615.490.8656 or visit their web page at floathorizen.com.