Adrift in BlissFloat in the Forest's Blog
Float in the Forest’s blog
…or How to Float
We have just finished adding subtitles to the video which everyone watches before they first float. This video takes you through the process of how to float. By that we mean the practicalities of using the shower, where things are in the room, and so on. This is vital information to make sure you get the most out of your float, and to keep you safe.
We don’t tell you what you will experience when you float. That’s different for everyone on every occasion, and discovering it is a joy which awaits you.
When we had finished writing the captions it became clear that a poem had been inadvertantly created. Here it is for your edification and enjoyment:
Welcome to Float in the Forest!
My name is Shari
and I’m going to be explaing what will happen
when you come for your first float.
So this is reception
We will be asking you to take
off your shoes when you come in
and you can either keep your socks on
or go bare foot
or take a clean pair of the spa sandals
This is the lounge where you can chill out
After your float
We have comfy chairs
and beautiful local art on the walls
This is the mirror room
Please remove any makeup before you float
because otherwise it can damage our towels
We provide washable makeup removal wipes
Which you can find in here
Here is one
You dampen it under the tap
Use some of the cleansing lotion on your face
And then give it a wipe to remove any makeup
You put it in the bag afterwards
So we know which ones to wash
We also provide for after your float
Hairdryers and organic moisturiser
We have two toilets
We strongly advise that you
go to the toilet before your float
When you’re finished in the mirror room
you’ll be coming out and going
through these blue doors here
through there is a quiet area
so please speak softly
Here we are in the corridor
we have two float rooms
Serenity and Tranquillity
Serenity is up one step
Whereas Tranquillity is up a slope
so is easily accessible
and you can specifically request that one
when you book if you wish
so let’s go check out the float room
Welcome to the float room.
This is your private room during the time that you’re here.
There’s a lock on the door if you want to use it.
it’s completely up to you
There’s only two situations when we would ever disturb you.
Firstly if there was an emergency,
like a fire, we would come and get you.
There’s an emergency robe in the bag on top there,
so if we needed to get you out in a hurry,
we’d do it with dignity.
There’s a fire exit at the far end of the corridor,
as well as the way we came in through the green doors.
The second situation is that there is a call button
in the pod that you can press if you need help,
I’ll be explaining that in a minute.
Other than those two things,
we wouldn’t disturb you.
So I’m going to point out some things around the room,
and then I’ll talk you through the process.
We have a wet room style shower.
The controls are very simple:
you turn the knob upwards.
We’ve got some natural toiletries here for you,
and a lovely big fluffy towel.
You can also ask to have a second towel
if you have longer hair.
And this is the float pod
Now I’ll talk you through the process
As we’ve said, first of all you’ll be going to the toilet
and removing any makeup.
If you have a phone or anything smart on you,
please switch it off or to airplane mode
because even if it vibrates that could disturb you.
When you’re back in the room from the toilet,
you’ll be getting undressed and removing any jewellery.
If you have any jewellery that doesn’t come off,
like a wedding ring,
you can leave that, that’s fine.
But anything else, if it can come off,
please do remove it,
and you’re welcome to put it on the shelf.
For your clothes there’s a couple of hangers
on the back of the door,
and also a chair for your stuff.
Remember – this is a wet room,
so the floor can get damp,
so it’s probably best to put your stuff on the chair.
You’ll be having a shower before and after your float.
This is not just about when you last had a shower.
It’s also about removing perfumes, oils and deodorants.
Before your first shower,
I’ll show you the first thing from the shelf.
We provide earplugs.
some people like them,
some people don’t.
They’ll stop some of the salt water
from getting into your ears.
They won’t stop it entirely,
so you’re going to give them a good rinse out at the end either way.
so it’s really up to you
With this kind you mould them to be a bit longer and thinner,
tuck them in behind this bit of your ear
and it’s best to put them in before the first shower,
because they stay in better if they go in dry.
So then you’ll be coming over to have your first shower
We’ve chosen these toiletries for being natural,
to try and minimise what gets into the pod
so we ask that you use this body wash on your body,
this shampoo on your hair,
but no conditioner at this stage.
You’re giving yourself a good wash
all the way down to the soles of your feet.
After your shower we have a little tip for you.
This might sound a little random
but we suggest that you dry your face with the towel.
There’s a reason
the water in the float pod is very salty
during the float you want to try and avoid getting it on your face
because if you get it in your eyes it will sting
and it doesn’t taste great either.
If your face dried naturally after the shower,
you might get drips or tickles,
next thing you know,
you’re touching your face with a salty finger,
and it goes in the eye.
So if you give your face a quick dry
with the towel after your shower, that helps.
If you have any cuts or broken skin,
they’ll also sting in the salty water.
So we also provide a sachet of vaseline
which you can use as a protective layer.
A bit like ketchup sachets,
they have a cut and an arrow which never line up,
but hopefully you can find your way in if you need it.
Once you’re in the float pod,
if something is stinging
maybe there’s a cut you didn’t know you had,
don’t worry it should fade after a little while.
This is called the halo.
It’s a kind of pillow
you put it behind your head like this for extra support.
Now strictly speaking, it’s not necessary
the water in the float pod is as dense as the Dead Sea,
it will support your head.
But some people find it surprisingly difficult
to relax these muscles here.
I think sometimes it can be whether you
trust the water and really let go,
or because we spend a lot of time in these kind of positions.
If you’re not sure,
you can take it in the pod with you and try it
if you decide you don’t want it,
just put it on the floor.
If you take it in with you,
we ask that you bring it out with you
otherwise we have to try and reach it like this!
And if you remember to put it over in the shower area
when you’re done with it, then even better.
So these three things are all optional.
Now you would be ready to get into the float pod.
If you have any nail polish on your toes,
we’ll ask that you be a bit careful.
Because we’ve found that if someone accidentally
drags it along the floor of the float pod,
it can leave marks which are quite hard to shift.
Getting into the float pod is like getting into the bath.
So you can just step in.
If you want to, you can sit on the side and swing your legs,
and there’s a grab handle there for a bit of extra support.
There’s no step,
it’s got a flat bottom,
and the water’s actually only about that deep.
So then you’re standing in the pod
you sit down,
you lie on your back
and you bob to the surface like a cork.
We recommend that you put your head at this end,
that’s for two reasons.
Firstly you’re by the exit,
so it’s just easier when you come to get out.
The second reason is to help you remember
that the light is on the left
so ‘L’ for light, ‘L’ for left.
Now you don’t have to touch the light if you don’t want to
But I’m going to show you, it’s very simple.
One press turns it off
one press turns it back on.
Then it has a little additional feature
when it’s on, two quick presses,
like a double-click on the mouse
and it puts it on a rainbow cycle.
So there’s lots of options with this light:
you can have it off,
you can have it on,
you can have it doing rainbows the whole time if you like,
or if there’s a colour you particularly like,
one more press
and you can pause it on that colour.
So this light is in your control.
These lights are a bit different
We can do different colours.
At the moment for this video
we’ve got them on white
so you can see everything clearly.
But we can do pink,
These lights are on an infra-red sensor.
So once you’re in the pod
and you stop moving in the room,
these will go out after about a minute.
But you can trust that when you get out,
or the pod door moves,
the lights will come back on again.
So if you turn the pod light off
it will go very very dark!
Now to me that is part of the magic
for me it’s a bit like floating in space
and that’s where my mind slows down and drifts off.
But I know that some people don’t feel ready for that,
and that’s fine.
Why not experiment?
You could try turning it off
and know that if you need to turn the light back on
it’s on the left hand side.
The button on the right is the call button
that I mentioned before.
So if you feel unwell
or you need any help
you can press that.
It’s not an intercom,
it sets off a sound at reception.
Either myself or Will,
one of us will come to the door,
knock on the door
and say something like
‘are you ok?’
If you pressed it by mistake really don’t worry
just call out, quite loudly,
‘I’m ok’, something like that,
we’ll leave you alone.
If we don’t hear a response,
or we’re worried about what you’re saying
we might knock once more.
If we’re still worried,
we’d be opening the door to see if we need to come in.
We’d do it respectfully,
but we’d be there to help.
Next to that is a bottle of pure water.
If you get the salty water on your face
you can use that to spray and wash it away.
It’s still better to try and avoid it if you can,
but that should help.
This is the pod door handle.
You can have the pod door open,
it can be part-way,
you can have it closed.
It’s a bit like a car boot,
so it hovers up to a certain point,
and then it wants to open.
You can choose to have the pod door open if you want to,
but we would say that you might feel a bit cooler.
The float room is set at 25 degrees C.
The water is 35 degrees.
So when you have the pod door closed
the air around you is also about 35 degrees.
This is skin temperature.
So after a while it can lead to a sensation where you can’t tell
where your body ends and the water begins.
To me that is also part of the magic.
But whatever you’re comfortable with, it’s all good,
and you can change your mind about the door
and the pod light through the float.
There’s a bit of music at the beginning,
to ease you into it,
and after about ten minutes,
that fades into silence.
During your float,
don’t feel you have to stay still,
I recommend that you try some different positions.
So, this is my favourite,
a lot of people say that it helps with neck and shoulder tension.
But you might try like this,
or like this,
have a little wriggle,
have a strech,
see what feels good.
You might find that different positions
release different muscle tensions.
During your float,
if you feel a bit sleepy,
it’s nothing to worry about.
You can fall asleep in this water,
and you won’t turn over.
Because you’re so buoyant,
there’s nothing to press off.
As the float’s coming to an end,
the music comes back on again,
that’s how you can tell.
The music at the end plays for about five minutes,
and then after that,
if you had the light off,
it comes back on again automatically,
and after that the pump starts.
Now you haven’t seen this yet
but all the water’s moving like this
you can’t miss it.
If you sleep through the music,
you will not sleep through that.
That’s like your final wake-up call
so if that’s happening
it is definitely time to get out
but ideally a bit before that.
So to rewind back a bit
as the music comes on,
you don’t need to rush,
you’ve got a few minutes.
We’d like you to be aware of a couple of things.
Floating can lower your blood pressure a bit,
so be careful in case you’re a bit wobbly.
And secondly, that the water is a bit silky with the salt,
so things might be a bit slippery.
So we suggest that as the music’s playing
you sit up, pause like that for a moment,
to let your body adjust
and check you feel ok,
before you carefully stand up.
And if you’ve got nail polish on your toes
we will ask that you be a little bit careful
and aware of it at that point.
Then you’re standing in the pod,
and you’ll have some salt water on your body.
While you’re still in the pod,
we ask that you try and brush it off a bit,
squeeze out the hair a bit,
to keep most of it in the pod.
Then you’ll be carefully stepping out,
and again if you want to,
you can sit on the side
and swing your legs,
use the grab handle.
Then you’re out and ready for your second shower.
During your showers
we ask that you close the pod door,
mainly to stop the soap from going in.
Then you’ll have your second shower.
Feel free to use any of the products we’ve provided,
or if you want to bring and use your own in the second shower,
Giving yourself a good wash.
Give your ears a good rinse out,
so plenty of this,
to get any salt water out of your ears.
Then you’ll be getting dried
and getting dressed
all still in here.
We ask that you don’t spray any deodorants
or perfumes in here
as we’re trying to keep it fragrance-neutral.
So if you’d like to do that,
please do it when you go through to the mirror room.
When you’re finished in here
you can leave your towel in here
and you’ll go on through the green doors
into the lounge.
We know this has probably been a lot to take in,
so feel free to rewind and
watch parts of it again if you wish.
If you have any questions
of course you can contact us in advance,
or ask us when you come in for your float.
We’re looking forward to seeing you soon.
We have an opening date! We are very pleased to announce that we will be reopening from Wednesday 8th July 2020 for floatation, and you can book right now. We have all learned a lot about the coronavirus and COVID-19 over the past few months. Knowledge can dispel...
The fifth winning hero! We are holding a 'Float Your Hero' competition every fortnight until we are able to re-open. (Hopefully not too much longer now!) This competition is for local heroes. They've been nominated by someone who admires what they do for their...
Details in the float centre We put a lot of thought into the art and other little touches around the float centre. When floating is a new experience, sometimes it can all be a lot to take in, so we love it when you notice and admire them too! Currently you don't have...
The fourth winning hero! Our 'Float Your Hero' competition is running every fortnight throughout the time that we are temporarily closed. This competition recognises amazing local heroes. The heroes have been nominated by someone who admires what they do for their...
Constantly moving, thinking, doing.Unable to press pause in a world where we are constantly connected. A time without social media and a million apps open in the mind and on our lifeline seems inconceivable… for it is not merely just a phone now… When was the last...
The third winning hero! Our 'Float Your Hero' competition recognises amazing local heroes every other Friday during the period that the float centre is temporarily closed. The heroes have all been nominated by someone who admires what they do for their community, and...
Floating – a journey into self discovery My floating journey started 1 year ago when the Float Centre in the Forest of Dean first opened. I was sceptical and nervous as I suffer from claustrophobia but from the moment you enter theCentre - Shari and Will owners and...
The second winning hero! We are holding a competition to recognise amazing local heroes, throughout the period that the float centre is closed. The potential heroes could be be NHS staff or they could be helping their community in many other ways at this difficult...
Hi Sara, how did you come to be an artist? Having worked in the media and hospitality for many years, it wasn’t until 2000 after a back injury that art became my primary focus. Now as a Contemporary Artist I am lucky to have exhibited in London and Bristol as well as...
We have a winning hero! We are proud to be holding a fortnightly competition to recognise amazing local heroes. These heroes might be NHS staff or doing other roles to help their community at this difficult time. The heroes have been nominated by someone who is...
I can’t count how many times I have spoken to someone about floating… It’s easily a 3 digit number by now. Many people‘s responses to my limitless enthusiasm for floating are more like: ‘I would not survive in my head for an hour’, ‘Why would you want to be closed in...
Find positivity in amongst chaos These are undoubtedly difficult times. Although the float centre is closed at the moment, we are still busy behind the scenes working on projects and new ideas. We wanted to do something special to recognise the amazing people out...
What does floating mean to me? If I had to sum it up in a single word, it would be freedom. I could talk about all the usual stuff - peace and quiet and taking time for myself and relaxing and achieving a deeper meditation - which is all fantastic and well worth...
Your health is our priority Everyone's wellbeing is our top priority, and for that reason we have taken the difficult decision to close Float in the Forest for the time being. We would like to make very clear that we have had no specific cause for concern at our...
Here is our statement about 'coronavirus' Take it seriously but keep calm There has been a lot of media coverage of the COVID-19 or 'coronavirus' lately, so we wanted to take this opportunity to let you know the facts about how we protect your health at Float in the...
Who is Monique Oliver? I am a self-taught professional artist and qualified/experienced educator based in the Forest of Dean.What do you do? I discovered paint pouring 5 years ago after several years of ill-health. All of my work is poured directly onto canvas from...
My story starts by the day I visited Float in the Forest on their Open day.... As we entered the reception we were greeted by Shari who gave us such a warm welcome, we were taken through into the rest area where the magical moment started. She then took us through...
It's our first birthday! We are coming up to our first birthday, which is hard to believe. What an amazing year it has been - this weekend we will cross the 1600 floats mark! We are so grateful to all those who have floated with us, and we have loved being able to...
Meet therapist Lauren Malone We'd like to introduce you to Lauren Malone. Lauren is a hypnotherapist and coach. She has been supporting people to make significant changes in their lives from Float in the Forest since July 2019.Master Practitioner Lauren has always...
Meet therapist Katy Davies Introducing therapist Katy Davies, who has been providing awesome therapies at Float in the Forest since August 2019, so we thought it was about time to tell you a bit more about her! From sport to sport massageKaty...
Meet therapist Karen Hopes Introducing Karen of Karen Hopes Aromatherapy, who makes the gorgeous moisturiser bars and melts we are now stocking in the float centre... As a child, Karen remembers soaking rose petals in water in jam jars to make ‘perfume’....
"I left like a new woman", by Angharad Does this look like the face of a stressed out woman? A woman on the edge of some sort of episode? One that's installed two hot tubs in the rain, driven across country at breakneck speed, was 40 minutes...
Your float centre is now open Wow - what an amazing few weeks we have had since our last blog! It was Float in the Forest's soft opening on Tuesday 19th February 2019, and we've had 69 people float with us in the first two weeks! We really...
Float in the Forest fit-out blog Tues 5th Feb 2019 THE FIT-OUT IS APPROACHING THE END The majority of the fit-out has been done now... exciting times! The plumbing, ventilation, carpentry and second fix electrics are all now finished. ...
Float in the Forest fit-out blog Fri 18th Jan 2019 Ventilation In our last fit-out blog, we mentioned that we were starting work on the ventilation system for the float centre. We've been having fun putting this system together - it's made progress, with...
Float in the Forest fit-out blog Fri 4th Jan 2019Time for paintingWe hope you had a lovely Christmas and New Year break.Over the festive period our construction team took some well earned time off. This meant we could get stuck into painting the float...
Float in the Forest fit-out blog Fri 21st Dec 2018 Lots of progress Since our last blog lots has happened in the float centre fit out, and we have been so impressed with how hard the team are working. The first fix electrics are now done, and...
Float in the Forest fit-out blog Fri 23rd Nov 2018 New ceilings in the float centre The basic building has very high ceilings, which would make it a hard space to heat. Your float centre is going to be a cosy and comfortable place, so we are...
Dare we mention the 'C' word? Ok, so maybe it's still a bit early, but we're getting in the festive mood! We'll try not to overdo it for those of you who aren't ready yet. Getting festive It's possible that you're starting to think about...
Float in the Forest fit-out blog Thurs 8th Nov 2018It's amazing how much can be achieved in under 2 weeks, when you've got the right team. Signage Before the fit-out began, we had our lovely signs created and installed, thanks to Pete at...
Thu 10am- 6pm