A buoyant journey in the latest spa therapy: flotation

As the tiny bubbles traced their way along my back, my mind drifted. Suspended in a space-age looking white pod filled with 180 gallons of water combined with 1,150 pounds of pharmaceutical-grade magnesium salts, I felt like I was cocooned away from the stressors of the week.
gainesvilletimes5When I arrived, late, to Infinity Floating in Braselton, my first question — “Do I have to stay in there a whole hour?” You see, I was, as usual, squeezing in many more meetings and appointments than a normal person’s day should allow. Owner Deborah Helms just smiled and said, “You’re here to try it. You’ll see.”
Her brief orientation in a pristine pod room that also included a rain forest shower filled me in on what to expect. I could control the soft underwater lighting, stay in the pod with the top open or closed, and if I didn’t feel like my head was floating enough, there was an air-filled pillow to help. It was all about being relaxed and letting the magnesium salt water do its magic.
She left me alone with instructions for a quick shower and told me how to safely step into the pod, filled with about 20 inches of water: warm, comfortable water. I pulled the pod closed, did a few stretches, tried out the float pillow — to buoyant for me — turned off the underwater lighting and …
Popular in the late 1950s through the early 1980s, flotation therapy is making a comeback for people who just need a break, or those who have various ailments.
Helm found out about the benefits of floating after 18 months of doctors’ appointments and tests didn’t relive her body pain. “A friend suggested that I try floating, and after one time, I took all the bottles of pills back to my doctors, and put myself on a three-times-a-week float,” she says. “I gradually went to twice a week, then once a week, but now that we have Infinity Floating, I’m in there every chance I get. I am amazed at the healing difference that it makes.”


… I seemed to forget all time and space as I floated, suspended in my pod.

Clients come in to reduce joint, muscle and back pain, relieve migraines and arthritis, hypertension, diabetes, poor digestion, fibromyalgia, stress and anxiety. “We have clients from all walks of life, from physicians and attorneys to parents, students, the elderly and athletes.
Clients are suspended in a zero-gravity state because of the high salt content of the water in the pod. “It’s 10 times more buoyant than the dead Sea, and you don’t need a passport to go there,” Helms says. “It’s the magnesium salt that keeps you floating, and the magnesium that draws out your body’s toxins and cortisol – stress hormones – and increases your good hormones, like endorphins and dopamine. It’s a soothing, relaxing and luxurious experience to be weightless.”
Meanwhile, I seemed to forget all time and space as I floated, suspended in my pod. Gently, the still waters began to move, the signal that my hour was up. “So soon?” I didn’t want to leave my pod to shower, dress and head to the rest of my hectic day.
“Deborah, surely I wasn’t in there the whole hour?” I asked. “You probably fell asleep, which is exactly what you should have done to get good benefits from your float,” she replied, smiling. “Now you see what I mean about the benefits of floating?” I asked her about the bubbles. Her answer? “They are caused by the toxins leaving your body.”
Infinity Floating, open Tuesdays through Sundays, is based on an appointment system. Plan for 90 minutes, including orientation, showers and a 60-minute float, but longer floats are offered as well. Call 706- 654-7118 or visit infinityfloating.com to learn more or make an appointment.
By the way, as I left, I felt lighter, calmer and noticed that my little aches and pains had disappeared. And, even after an hour in salt water, my fingers weren’t the least bit pruny or wrinkled!

Story by Pamela A. Keene | Photography for Home Magazine

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