The exterior of a float spa building in Vacaville.

I Tried the New Float Spa in Vacaville and…

True Rest Float Spa just opened in Vacaville. I’ve wanted to try sensory deprivation therapy for a long time. Today, I finally did. Here’s how it went.

Float therapy is lying in a tank of shallow water with over 1,000 pounds of salt in it. The salt makes you easily float on the surface and gives a sense of weightlessness. The water is also the exact temperature of your skin, so it doesn’t even feel like you’re in it. Optionally, you can remove all light and the room is (almost) soundproof. The goal is to achieve true and deep relaxation of the body and mind.

BTW, here’s a video about the experience…

I made an appointment online. For the first float, I showed up a half hour early to watch the orientation video and to be shown how the tanks (or “pods”) work. I was walked to my private float room and followed the instructions given.

Each room is private. There’s a shower which you’re supposed to use before and after your float. The first shower is to remove all the chemicals (hair spray, deodorant, etc) from your body so you don’t contaminate the tank. The after-float shower is to get all the salt off you.

Yeah, there’s a lot of salt.

You’re provided earplugs to keep the water (and sound) out of your ears and Vasoline to cover any cuts or scrapes before entering the salty water. There are towels and a spray bottle of clean water in case you get salt in your eyes.

It’s recommended to float nude. But, you are allowed to wear a swimsuit if you’d like. I followed the recommendations (apologies for the visual).

A sensory deprivation tank filled with salt water.

When in the tank, you have the option of keeping the “lid” open if you tend to get claustrophobic. You can connect your music to speakers and you can change the color of the ambient lights.

If you’re wanting the sensory deprivation experience (like I did) then close the lid, turn off the lights and forego the music. Between the weightlessness, the pitch black pod interior, absence of noise, and the perfect temperature…

You almost feel like you’re dead. It’s trippy!

The first few minutes I spent re-training my brain to understand I wasn’t going to sink in this water. It was actually difficult to push an arm or leg down into the water. It’s not a natural feeling and takes some time get used to. I naturally tensed my neck in a subconscious effort to keep my head above water. After a while, I finally trusted this wasn’t necessary.

Then I had about 40 minutes of absolute stillness and silence. My mind didn’t wander like I thought it would and it was truly a relaxing experience. The only sound was the sound of my breath, which I focused my attention on. I almost fell asleep.

I had a really hard time keeping track of time in the tank. I was told the time would fly by. For me, it actually seemed a lot longer than an hour. Toward the end, I started to get a little restless. I even worried that I’d somehow missed the queue that my hour was over.

I was told music would begin playing to indicate the final five minutes of my float. Then the lights and water circulation pumps were supposed to turn on. I never heard any music though. The water pump came on to abruptly notify me that my hour had ended.

The amount of salt on me was insane when I got out. I showered to remove the thick, salty coat and was fully exfoliated when I put my clothes back on. I exited into the “Oasis Room” where staff offered me tea or water. First-time guests and members can also use the spa’s oxygen bar.

A menu in front of a colorful oxygen bar with six flavors.

I’ve never used an oxygen bar before. Staff hooked a small (disposable) tube into my nostrils and started pumping flavored air into my nose. I had the choice of six flavors and chose Eucalyptus. It was interesting.

I felt fully relaxed. I’ve had many massages in my life and recognized the freshly relaxed sensation I usually feel after a massage… but better.

I probably felt more relaxed than I have in over ten years. My mind felt clear. My muscles weren’t tense. I couldn’t feel the regular aches and pains in my lower back and knees.

This was an awesome experience.

True Rest offers individual float sessions but encourages monthly memberships for discounts. I’ll be back for another and I may consider the membership down the road.

I’m really glad True Rest has arrived in Vacaville and encourage you to give it a try if you’re looking to push the limits on relaxation.

What is Float Therapy?

Float therapy, also known as sensory deprivation or flotation therapy, involves lying in a dark, soundproof tank filled with water that is heated to skin temperature and saturated with Epsom salt. The salt allows you to easily float on the water’s surface. You feel weightless and can achieve deep relaxation.

Advocates of float therapy claim it offers numerous health benefits, including:

  • Stress reduction
  • Pain relief
  • Improved sleep
  • Enhanced mental clarity

Learn more with this book on Amazon:
The Float Tank Cure: Free Yourself From Stress, Anxiety and Pain the Natural Way
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