Jack­son floata­tion ther­apy cen­ter treats pain, stress

The Commercial Appeal - - Local - KEN­NETH CUM­MINGS

An­nette Fowler stepped into the 93.5 de­gree wa­ter ex­pect­ing to find a bet­ter way of re­lax­ation and re­lieve joint pain. Fowler closed the 30-inch-wide shower door to her pri­vate pool, and af­ter a few min­utes of no move­ment, the lights went out. For 90 min­utes, Fowler floated. “Re­ally, it’s about main­te­nance,” Fowler said be­fore her float ses­sion. “So, if this helps re­lieve the oc­ca­sional dis­com­fort and stresses I feel, then I think it will be well worth my time to do this as a reg­u­lar pro­ce­dure.”

Jack­son Float Ther­apy and Mas­sage, lo­cated in the Hamil­ton Hills Shop­ping Cen­ter, opened Dec. 1. The first float ther­apy ses­sion was given on the 19th of the same month. It of­fers emo­tional, spir­i­tual and phys­i­cal ben­e­fits, ac­cord­ing to owner Tom Collins.

Ac­cord­ing to Collins, floata­tion ther­apy helps peo­ple with emo­tional con­di­tions such as PTSD, anx­i­ety and de­pres­sion, as well as help­ing peo­ple fur­ther their med­i­ta­tion prac­tice.

In ad­di­tion to im­prov­ing emo­tional con­di­tions, Collins said, many phys­i­cal ail­ments, such as shoul­der, hip, lower back and joint is­sues, be­come bet­ter with floata­tion ther­apy.

“The biggest rea­son is be­cause you’re at zero grav­ity,” said Collins. “And the rea­son you get to zero grav­ity is be­cause there’s 1,000 pounds of Ep­som salt in the wa­ter.”

Ac­cord­ing to Collins, the dense wa­ter al­lows peo­ple to float like a stick on the wa­ter.

Jack­son Float Ther­apy and Mas­sage is one of three floata­tion ther­apy fa­cil­i­ties in Ten­nessee.

Collin’s fa­cil­ity dif­fers from the oth­ers due to the unique as­pect of three pri­vate rooms. Each 10-footwide room in­cludes a shower and a pool that is 5 feet wide by 8 feet long, with 10 inches of wa­ter in the pool. The Ep­som salt is dis­solved in the wa­ter. “The open float is de­signed to help peo­ple who have am­bu­la­tory is­sues, mo­bil­ity is­sues and claus­tro­pho­bic is­sues,” Collins said about one of the three float rooms.

Fowler said that she could equate the float ses­sion to be­ing in outer space, if she could ever get the ex­pe­ri­ence, be­cause she didn’t feel her body.

“You’re just there,” Fowler said about the tem­per­a­ture of the wa­ter in­side the pool af­ter com­plet­ing her first float ses­sion. “The tem­per­a­ture is so sooth­ing. You re­ally don’t know if you’re in cool wa­ter or hot wa­ter.”

Although Fowler had to pre­pare men­tally for her float ses­sion, she said that it was an awe­some ex­pe­ri­ence when she was lifted af­ter lay­ing back in the pool.

“I had to sort of build up a trust fac­tor when I got in,” Fowler said. “I don’t float well when I’m in a swim­ming pool, so I didn’t know how well I would float in this pool, but be­lieve me, once you lie back, it lifts you right up.”

Fowler said that it’s a re­ally good time to med­i­tate or to pray and to for­get about your day if you can.

“To me, that’s the whole ob­jec­tive of it: to take your­self away to an­other place,” said Fowler. “It may take time, a lit­tle prac­tice and a lit­tle time, but I was able to achieve it.” Fowler plans to re­turn for more float ses­sions. Collins also be­lieves that when Fowler re­turns, the ex­pe­ri­ence will be even bet­ter.

For peo­ple who have ques­tions about the san­i­ta­tion fac­tor of the pools, Collins said that be­tween float ses­sions the wa­ter goes through a fil­tra­tion sys­tem that keeps the wa­ter clean. Collins said it is vir­tu­ally im­pos­si­ble for germs to live in the wa­ter.

Jack­son Float Ther­apy and Mas­sage also of­fers mas­sage ther­apy in re­lax­ation mas­sage, soft tis­sues and pain man­age­ment.

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