Writer: Suzanne Huntzinger
Photography provided by Better Being Float Center
Everyone remembers the commercial with the mom in the middle of a chaotic day, at the end of which she begs, “Take me away.” These days, it’s almost impossible to imagine a day that goes by that isn’t full of the same stress and chaos or even pain. Decades after the famous Calgon commercials, the stresses of this generation are even greater with hardcore athletics, sensory overload from digital technology, and for some, pain from illness or injury.
Fortunately, Better Being Float Center has a solution that’s much better than a bubble bath. In its two centers, on the west side and Carmel, Better Being Float Center offers 90 minutes to let you shut out the world, float in a tank and feel your stress or pain dissolve. Opening just three years ago on the west side and just over a year ago in Carmel, Better Being Float Center is Indiana’s first and largest float tank centers.
Both float centers have three float pods, filled with 11 inches of water heated to body temperature and 900 pounds of Epsom salts, to make you instantly buoyant. The three pods, made by Royal Spa, have a lid that closes to enhance the sensory deprivation experience. But, for those who might feel claustrophobic, Carmel’s float center has two open pools (no lid) to give you the same experience. Guests can connect their phones to run their playlists or have the room completely silent. Silent or not, you’ll leave your session feeling refreshed and rested.
Float tanks, like the Calgon commercials, were immensely popular in the 1970s. Scientists promoted the benefits of floating in a darkened pod to relax the mind and expand creative thinking. At the onset of the 80s, amid concerns of spreading disease between uses, floating tanks lost popularity.
Then in the new millennium, float centers made a major comeback. New technology made it possible to clean and sanitize the tanks, eliminating concerns about the spread of disease. The resurgence was fueled by people looking for relief for aching muscles from sports that have become intensely competitive and people looking for a way to manage the pressures of life in a world that never shuts down thanks to digital technology. Simply put, the need for relaxation is greater than ever.
An online directory showed more than 300 float centers in 2015, up from 85, just four years prior.
“We get lots of athletes that come after a big game to get some relief for sore muscles,” says Matt Schober, Co-owner of Better Being Float Center. “But an even more important benefit is the way floating helps reset the central nervous system and melts the stress away.”
Stress relief through floating has big benefits not just for those who have a demanding job but also for students whose habits include frequent late-night studying sessions.
“We have two groups of students who come see us at the Carmel center,” Schober says. “A group of guys from a Butler fraternity and a group of guys from IUPUI come see us during finals week.”
Along with muscle pain from sports, people dealing with chronic pain from health issues like fibromyalgia, herniated discs or arthritis can get relief from going weightless in water. Float therapy also provides tremendous results for people battling mental or emotional issues.
“Floating benefits people battling anxiety or depression, and it’s even great therapy for recovering addicts,” Schober adds. “Studies show that floating naturally increases dopamine and endorphin levels and boosts your mood for days afterward. The positive effects are undeniable.”
Word is spreading quickly about the benefits of floating.
“When we first opened, maybe one or two percent of the people we talked to knew about float pods. Now, at least 50 percent know about it,” Schober says. “But we want people to be aware of all the benefits of slowing down, disconnecting from the outside world and letting yourself heal.”
Find out how Better Being Float Center can take you away from stress or pain. Visit betterbeingfloatcenter.com for information about the benefits of floating. Sessions start at $65 per visit, and discounted packages are available. Better Being also offers massage therapy.
Stop by the Better Being Float Center on the west side at 3065 Salt Lake Rd., Indianapolis, or call them at 317-755-2677. Visit the Carmel location at 20 Executive Dr., Suite G, or give them a call at 317-993-3955.