CLARKSTON, Mich. (FOX 2) - Imagine floating effortlessly. you feel weightless, unencumbered by physical problems that surround and consume you every day.
That's the experience at Float Clarkston where you lay in a pool of water and a lot of salt - and float to feel your body physically let go. While Float Clarkston is not the first in the area, people are finding more ways to destress, especially now.
Included among those in need of destressing is Dit Vannouvong, a busy father of 2 who spends about an hour every month or so just floating.
"You kinda let your body take form in its natural state," said Dit. "I kinda think about it as kind of doing meditation. You know, doing yoga, doing meditation - it's quiet. You're in this confined area that's kind of dark and quiet. It's kind of just letting go a little bit. You do have to get into that comfort level, comfort state for you to really benefit from anything. You're not in there wiggling around, you're not stretching, you're not playing with the water. You're just, honestly letting your body relax and float."
The air and the water are all the same temperature
"When you're in there, laying down, you can't really tell where your body begins and where the air begins and you have that sensation of floating," said owner Stephanie Benson.
The key, as Benson explains, is the salt.
"It's 10 inches of water and just over 1000 pounds of medical-grade Epsom salt and you pop right on top of the water effortlessly. "
She said she first discovered float therapy while on a trip and said it had a profound impact on her anxiety. So she decided to bring it to Clarkston.
"People float for many different reasons, but ideally, right now especially, stress relief, anxiety, depression, all of that can kind of melt away in these tanks."
Researchers are studying the medical benefits of float therapy, but there's a noticeable irony, even though you are in an enclosed small space, there's freedom.
"You're unplugged, we all are kind of like this all day (hunched over) and the back of your neck is able to totally relax. You have to consciously tell yourself, set your intentions, let go, relax. Once you do that, you can just feel the weight getting lifted off," said Benson.
It is tub so you do have to be mostly undressed to float. Dit said that took him a bit of time to adjust but eventually that faded away.
"It takes some getting used to, I think, the first couple times you're like what is this? Essentially, you don't think about it and it's just so comfortable in there," said Dit.
As for how clean it is, Benson said that's elaborate and includes a triple-filtration process that uses ozone and UV light.
Deena Centofanti tried the 60-minute float and initially, she was moving around but eventually lost track of time and said she was able to just relax into a zen-like state.