PHOTOS BY Hillary Ehlen
We live in a world with constant stimulation. Everything we do can cause stress and create tension where it was never meant to be, physically and mentally.
Salt2O is Fargo-Moorhead’s first dedicated float spa bringing expertise and knowledge of the benefits of floatation therapy, giving you relief from the stresses of everyday life, improved creativity and uninterrupted time to relax.
As the editor of Fargo Monthly, I get to try a lot of new things, and I decided to test this out. Keep in mind, everyone’s experience is different, but this is my experience and what I realized during my hour of floating on salt water.
I was strangely nervous to do the float spa at Salt2O, but those nerves immediately evaporated as I stepped into the lobby. I was greeted by Jarrid Gable and Quinn Dixon, who describe themselves as “the brains” behind the operation and “the float master,” respectively. (Jarrid is the son of Tim Gable, the official owner of Salt2O.) They are two of the sweetest human beings and I immediately felt like a friend. They were welcoming and easy to talk to, willing to share their stories and experiences with floating, putting my semi-anxious mind at rest.
We entered the room that held the float cabin and they explained everything I would need to know, as well as why things were set up the way they were and how to properly navigate the space.
The room had a bench with a towel, washcloth, ear plugs and ointment to put on cuts. There was a robe on the back of the door and a pair of slippers beside the bench in case I needed to pop out during the experience to use the restroom.
They explained the procedure to take:
- Shower to get rid of body oils
- Open float cabin door and step inside
- Wipe your face with the towel located in the cabin, removing any water so it doesn’t run into your eyes when you lay down
- Put in earplugs, creating a quieter atmosphere and also helps so salt water doesn’t get into your ears
- Lay down and press the button on the side to turn lights off
I stepped into the float cabin and immediately my body began to float. I reached over and clicked off the lights, creating total and complete darkness.
I deal with neck and back pain, so I thought it would be best to use the provided noodle for extra neck support. I quickly realized that I was only using it because I wasn’t trusting my ability to relax. After I got rid of it, it took a little while, but I eventually was able to let go of control and trust the water and salt would do their job.
All I could hear was my breathing and the sound of my heart — which, to be honest, at first was kind of creepy. With constant stimulation around us, we aren’t used to hearing our bodies so clearly. I focused on my breathing and every other sound — my heart, the splashes in the water — melted away.
For much of the experience, it felt like that stage you get in right before you fall asleep at night. I eventually did fall asleep, but for most of my time in the cabin, it was just me and my dream-like thoughts.
Falling asleep is normal, so when there were five minutes left, music started to play to signal my body to wake up and prepare to exit the cabin. When the time was up, Jarrid and Quinn spoke through the intercom saying, “Kara, it’s time to get up.”
Exiting the cabin, I discovered the way the salt water had affected me. After being in darkness and silence for so long, I became very aware of my surroundings. The brightness of the lights, the sound of the water running as I started the shower to wash the salt off my body, the feeling of the soap. It was actually really beautiful to be so aware of what was around me. It helps you to slow down, taking in every moment.
What I noticed the most, though, was my neck, shoulder and back pain were almost completely gone. I had given my body time to completely relax as the water and salt held me up, creating almost zero tension. It makes me wonder how my body would feel if I began to do this therapy semi-regularly.
After I showered, got dressed and packed up my things, I exited the room and headed out to the lobby. Jarrid and Quinn were waiting for me with a cup of tea, excited to hear about my experience.
Like I mentioned before, everyone’s experience is different. I enjoyed every moment of mine and I’m happy with how I was feeling after it was over. They recommend trying it at different times of the day to see what works best for you. My experience was at 8 a.m. and I think the only thing I would do differently is trying it in the evening next time or the morning of a day I don’t have to immediately go to work afterward.
Whether you’re dealing with stress, anxiety or physical pain, I highly recommend trying this therapy. If you’re not sure but are curious about it, stop into Salt2O. Jarrid and Quinn would be happy to answer any questions you have and share their own experiences with you.
3285 Fiechtner Dr., Suite A, Fargo