As a mom, there are more times than I care to admit that all I wish for is peace and quiet. I never knew it was something I truly needed until I had a boy and a girl, 18 months apart, with voices that rival that sound of a freight train. I love my children, and I even embrace the chaos, but I also need to make time for relaxation and solitude. We all need to do this, but all too often, it slips to the bottom of the priority list. In 2018 I’ve resolved to be more purposeful about this time and one thing I wanted to try was a visit to Tao Float Loft.
Have you heard of this newer business in the Cincinnati area? I kept seeing photos of women floating peacefully in a pod filled with water and I was both skeptical and intrigued. You probably felt the same way when you saw this new form of relaxation. I was able to get a firsthand experience with it a few days ago, so I am here to give you a behind-the-scenes look at what this “float experience” is all about.
I arrived at the Mariemont location of Tao Float Loft (there is also one in West Chester) and was warmly greeted by a staff member. She explained how it would all work and asked if I had any questions. I’m not pregnant but I did ask if pregnant women could take advantage of floating and she said they recommend you are past your first trimester, but to always check with your doctor first, of course. I think it would have felt great toward the end of my pregnancies! But aside from that, I was just anxious to get started, so she showed me to my room.
When you book an appointment for an hour-long float session, your float time is actually a full 60 minutes. Each room is spacious and includes a (much larger than I thought) 8-foot-long pod that is filled with warm salt water. The room also has a shower to use before and after your float. You must rinse off before you get in and you’ll also definitely want to shower after to get all of the salt water off – they provide shampoo, conditioner, and body wash, as well as towels. Once I knew how it all worked, I was left on my own, changed into my swimsuit (you can float without one, if you choose!) and rinsed off. There is soft music playing at the beginning and when you get into the pod, there is about 5 minutes more of the music and then it fades away, leaving you with that lovely peace and quiet. And then you do nothing. Literally. Imagine a full 60 minutes of just floating in warm water. When your time is up, the music will slowly come back on, so you know you need to get out.
From my experience, here are a couple things that I think most people would want to know before going in to Tao Float Loft. Even if you are claustrophobic, it’s still amazing. I do not do well in tight places and I was completely fine. You can choose not to close the lid, which is what I did, and I didn’t feel anxious about it at all. You will be given earplugs to wear while you float – wear them! Your ears are submerged the entire time, so you’ll want them. Also, if you can’t relax enough to let your head just float on its own, they have a head float that you can use to help. I ended up using it, as it allowed my upper body to completely relax. Another thing – it doesn’t smell like salt water, but your skin does feel weird during the float. It’s a combination of silky and slimy, but I promise it’s not weird. The saltwater is great for your skin!
I went into my float time feeling anxious (a regular issue for me) and extremely sore in my neck and shoulders from stress and recent workouts. I have to tell you that once I got used to floating (it took me about 10 minutes to truly let go), the anxiety and pain went away. I opened my eyes at one point and was amazed at how good I felt. And that feeling lasted for quite awhile once I was finished. Tao Float Loft recommends floating three times per month for the most benefit and I can totally see why!
If you’ve been curious about this new form of relaxation, I highly recommend you give it a try. It’s definitely a different sensation, but one that I could very much get used to. And it’s perfect for parents who simply need an hour to relax every part of their being and recharge for the next chaotic moment. And keep it in mind for birthday gifts, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, next Tuesday… any occasion!
For more information on Tao Float Loft, including pricing and specials, scheduling and even more details on what to expect, check out their website here.
A native Cincinnatian, Andrea has experienced life in all four corners of this city. After growing up on the west side, she headed north to attend Miami University, then moved east to Hyde Park and now lives in Northern Kentucky with her family.
When she’s not playing trains and doing the “hot dog dance” as a stay-at-home mom to her two toddlers, Andrea is busy writing for Cincinnati (and, ahem, Kentucky!) publications and brainstorming ideas for her next children’s book! With a newfound passion for fitness and overall health, she spends a lot of time at her family gym and loves to play outside.
Andrea worked in education for several years and has a special love for children’s literature. She loves showing her children all our city has to offer and enjoys sharing her finds with other parents. Her favorite spots include the Cincinnati Zoo (although she steers clear of the bird house), her local library and any playground.