MASTERED MEDITATION? PERFECTED PILATES? WELL NOW THERE’S ANOTHER METHOD OF RELAXATION IN TOWN. CHARLIE BOND HEADS TO SIMPLY FLOAT TO FLOAT HER TROUBLES AWAY…
Floatation therapy may be a new wellbeing addition in Tunbridge Wells, but these pods have been helping people for decades, and studies show that as well as helping with relaxation, they eliminate stress and offer pain relief.
I visit Simply Float on a Monday evening, after a hectic day at work, and I’m anything but relaxed. I’m greeted by owner Tom Snow and his partner Jess, who opened the spa at the beginning of the year. Tom has been using ﬂoatation therapy for over ten years – after being injured in a motorbike accident and reading about the beneﬁts of Epsom salts, he tried ﬂoatation therapy and was hooked – and now he’s introduced the practice to Tunbridge Wells so that we can experience the beneﬁts too.
I’m taken down to one of the therapy rooms containing the ﬂoatation pod, so that I can begin my experience. Jess shows me how to operate it, and then after a quick shower I’m ready to relax and unwind.
The pod is bigger than I expected; I drive a Mini and I’m pretty sure there’s more headroom here than in my car. Users can choose to have the lid open or closed, but for the optimum experience it’s recommended you close the lid and switch off the internal light – which is what I do.
Soft music and sounds of the sea play for the ﬁrst few minutes, and then slowly they fade away, leaving you with just your thoughts and the soothing warm water cocooning you.
I’ll admit – the ﬁrst few minutes are a bit awkward; I bob upwards and hit my head, opening the lid up, and then I ﬁnd myself splashing about, trying to ﬁnd a comfortable position. But, eventually, with the aid of a pool noodle to support my neck, and the lid ﬁrmly closed, I ﬁnd my optimum ﬂoating position and begin to unwind.
I usually struggle to switch off and stop my mind from chattering, but once I’m settled it’s actually quite easy to relax. The salt soothes my skin and in the pod it’s very tranquil – I feel as though I’m ﬂoating on a lilo in a pool, minus the screaming kids throwing beach balls.
Five minutes before the end of the session, the sea sounds return, which signals the end of my ﬂoatation experience. Feeling much lighter and rejuvenated, I step in the shower to remove the salts, and head back upstairs where there’s a selection of fruit teas waiting.
For the rest of the evening I feel like I’m ﬂoating on a cloud, and when I go to bed I fall asleep within minutes. It’s recommended you have three sessions to really feel the benefits and be able to switch off, but I deﬁnitely think you’ll feel relaxed after just one – just don’t get the salt water in your eyes!
16 Monson Road,
Kent TN1 1ND