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Art of the Float

Author: Art of the Float

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Art of the Float is a podcast about float tanks and float centers. It's hosted by three float center owners who discuss their experiences and knowledge to help others looking to start their own business.
240 Episodes
If you attended the 2022 Float Conference in Portland, Maine, you might remember a special presentation diving into the fascinating history behind the founder of sensory deprivation. Marshall Hammond from Float Tank Solutions and Float On in Portland joins us in this episode to discuss John C. Lilly's interesting history. You’ll hear about Lilly’s time at St. Thomas, his dolphin research, his continued connections to the CIA and Project MKULTRA. It’s a wild ride! Marshall has been floating and working with the float world since 2012, and he has spent many years studying Dr. Lilly and plans to write a book about all that he’s learned. If you’d like to learn more, be sure to check out Marshall’s podcast and Patreon called Deep State History. Links Deep State History Patreon ( Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
Your hosts started out with one goal in mind - to talk about kids and floating. But in true Art of the Float fashion, they couldn’t just leave it at that. So this episode is like three in one! First up, you’ll learn about what each host does (or doesn’t do) in the way of hosting floats for kids - policies to implement, waivers, conversations to have, and pricing. You’ll learn what questions you should ask upfront and why it’s so important to forewarn the parent about the potential for stinging. Then you’ll journey through a valuable sidebar conversation about donating floats and whether or not members get to keep their credits after they cancel. Two are a hard yes, and one says nope, but with a twist. Visit our show page for a full transcript of the show and more! Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
If you missed last year’s Float Conference, or if you chose to attend the amazing breathwork session that happened at the same time, and you missed Kim’s “Creating an Organic Sales Funnel” workshop, you’re in luck! In this episode, Kim breaks down a few key points about implementing some strategies to get folks to come back through the door again after their first float. You’ll hear some common challenges to getting returning guests, how to create a powerful offer that isn’t salesy, how to create “soft sell touchpoints”, and how to create a successful mindset to motivate your team (or yourself!). It’s not just about creating a killer deal or setting quotas. Creating an effective organic sales funnel involves thinking about your why - understanding that you opened your doors to help your community find relief from the world and all that comes with the human condition - and remembering that “selling” is really just “helping”. Be sure to take a few notes, and for your homework, try at least one of the strategies discussed, and then we’d love to hear how it goes for you! Send us a message so we can share it with the world! Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
Cassie is the Founder of Deva Coffee joins the pod and spills the beans on why they created a coffee company who's current mission is to help fund float research! Find out why Deva Coffee is such a great pairing with floating and how you can sell coffee at your float center while supporting the FRC! Links Deva Coffee Website ( Follow Deva Coffee on Instagram ( Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
It’s always a hot topic - hair dye! A recent conversation on the Float Collective (a Facebook group for float center owners) sparked some great comments about what we should include in our hair dye policies. We invited Kat Roberts, owner of Surface Float in Canada, to join us and hash out the pros and cons of different policies, and what we should all know about how hair dye works - color molecules, stripping agents, and more! Kat breaks down her white towel test, performed on site with anyone whose hair may reek havoc on a float tank, and Kim shares why a blanket time-period based policy might only provide a false sense of security. This quick episode is a must-listen for anyone who operates a float center! Sponsors HelmBot ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
The Salty Spot Volume 1

The Salty Spot Volume 1


_WARNING: This episode includes a little language drop, so we don’t recommend it for little ears. _ Have you ever wondered what happens when someone notices trends and news across the float industry, and then a group of podcast hosts get together about those things? If so, you’re in luck! The crew invited Producer Olga to join the show and toss out the latest news and trends that have been happening over the past couple of months. You’ll hear a bit about the great debate over transdermal absorption of magnesium sulfate, and how one floaty human is using magnesium chloride to supplement the float solution in an effort to promote absorption for health benefits, along with some concerns and questions we should all iron out before shifting the standard. Other news includes floods across multiple centers and hair dye debacles, sprinkled with tidbits on some favorite tools and products to have on hand (including Fiberglass Stain Remover, vitamin C tabs, charcoal filters, a sump pump, and water leak alarms). You’ll also be SHOCKED to hear the dates for the 2023 Float Conference in Louisville, KY. (Spoiler: Pre-conference workshops and events start on August 16th, and the conference is August 18-20!) Sponsors HelmBot ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
New Year, New Hurdles!

New Year, New Hurdles!


New year, new flood? Yep. So many floods - at home, at the center, all over the world! This first-show-of-the-year wiggles and winds through all the adventures of float center owner life - balancing family time for the holidays, deciding what gift card strategy to use, how many times you have to clean up a flood, whether a staggered schedule is right for you, who is beating and who dodged cancer, whether that “COVID padding” during turnovers is still needed, and how things are going when trying to sell your center. This year is off to an interesting start already! The crew is back and warming up for a big year with you! Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
269: Everything Butt

269: Everything Butt


Show notes. Show notes. Show notes. They want me to write show notes, so with an episode like this, that’s the best I can do. Show notes. How do you write notes for something that covers frog butts, bidets, Caring Bridge, cancer, closures, floods, laundry failures, rock stars, and favorite socks — and write show notes?! I can’t do it. If you’re looking for advice for running your float center, you might find some here - mostly centered around ensuring you have electricity for the bidet of our dreams, but otherwise, the takeaway is this – get yourself a network of friends who’ll be there to send you inappropriate photos when times are hard, who’ll bring up your secrets on air, and who will laugh and cry with you through it all. Happy holidays, and happy new year, dear friends. This is a fun one. Sorry, Olga. Links Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
How do you manage 6500 square feet and nine service modalities? Well, according to Tammy and Terry, owners of AquaSpa Float Center and Wellness Boutique in Oswego, New York, you hire a rock star team! Their managers, Katie and Terry (yes, another Terry) also joined the conversation to share their insights on the day-to-day operations, and how they keep a seamless flow, how many staff members are on a shift, and how they deliver personalized service to each guest who visits “the sanctuary”. This team certainly has created something magic in their community, and we know you’ll enjoy hearing all of their behind-the-scenes secrets about what modalities they love, those they regret, and what’s next - because they still aren’t done adding services yet! Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
We’ve heard about VR and floating. Maybe you already have an opinion on it. Just hold that for now please. Our guest in this episode is taking VR a bit of a different direction - pairing it with meditation and biofeedback. Yep, we’ve heard about meditation and biofeedback before, but Healium puts allllll of it together in a new way! Gloria is introducing this new technology at her studios, so the crew interviewed the Healium founder, Sarah Hill to find out what’s so special about it. Sarah has a background in TV news, and part of her beat involved covering traumatic stories. Eventually that led her to work with veterans, and as they started using virtual reality, they noticed a major shift - participants were FEELING emotions, not just watching things happen on a screen. It was a powerful discovery that led to her new program. Sarah guides us through getting started with incorporating augmented reality and virtual reality into a meditation practice, as well as how her app is like a “portable, digital chill pill that prepares you for the float tank.” Links www.tryhealium Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
266: Shane Stott

266: Shane Stott


Many float center owners backed a Kickstarter project by Shane Stott to release a documentary about the benefits of floating. Shane was already fairly well known in the float world, having released a book called The Float Tank Cure, about his battles with anxiety, depression, and stress, and how his downward spiral led him to a lifestyle of drinking too much and trying to drown out the pain. He learned about floating and went on to create his own tank, posting his plans and schematics online for his followers. Eventually, that led to a partnership that launched Zen Float Tanks, a portable, home model. And because Shane wanted the world to know about floating, he set out to create a documentary highlighting his story, but also the stories of so many others whose lives had been improved by float therapy. But it all fell apart. As Shane said, “Admitting defeat was the hardest thing for me.” He lays it all out on this intimate episode – battling pandemic challenges, inflatable paddleboards wreaking havoc on his production, having an “increased tolerance for disappointment”, cutting hundreds of hours of film down to just over 98 minutes, delay after painful delay, experiencing profound loss, and eventually… finding peace. He says he felt like he was running a marathon that turned out to be an ultra. His finish line kept moving, but after listening to this story, it sounds like maybe he just crossed it. At least until he signs up for the next one…. Links ( Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
We all know that floating is a powerful practice, loaded with countless benefits. We’re often aware that we don’t want to promise too much, but one particular area where we might be able to talk a little more is about how float therapy can be beneficial for patients with body image concerns and/or eating disorders. If you made it to the 2022 Float Conference, you likely heard Dr. Emily Choquette sharing the latest findings about how LIBR (Laureate Institute for Brain Research) is studying the impact of float therapy and anorexia nervosa. We were delighted to invited Dr. Choquette to the show to talk in depth about that data, as well as how she got involved in the work. She shared that since anorexia is a particularly challenging condition to treat, and new treatments aren’t being developed fast enough, the research that had already been done on anxiety and floating was a perfect gateway to expand studies. Early research shows that even just a single float can promote positive changes in a patient’s perception of their body. We chatted with her about what we, as float center owners, can do to continue to foster a relationship with the science community and how to talk about this benefit that could potentially help many individuals who struggle with body image or eating disorders. Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
For one of our co-hosts, it is. Bomb dropped. (Well, it was ignited on a previous episode, if you listened closely, but here, we let it all out.) Someone is out. Would you ever sell yours? You’re about to hear all of the why’s, the what if’s, and the why not’s, but most importantly the “how we got here”. Float center owners are a special breed, and unknowingly, starting a center often ignites an insatiable entrepreneurial spirit. This person shares a bit about how that spirit is leading them to another adventure, while they still love the float and are in a position to leave while things are good. A memorable line you’ll hear: “I’m comfortable with hope and chasing the dream, and I thrived when I was building the float center.” That explains a lot, for a lot of us. Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
What happens when two float center owners get a little antsy during a global pandemic that shuts down their centers? They launch a new business together, of course! In this episode, Ryan Duey of Capitol Floats and Michael Garrett of Reboot share the story of how they came up with the idea to launch their own manufacturing business for cold plunge tubs - Cold Plunge. There are many parallels between floating and plunging, primarily focused on the breath and the awareness of the present moment, so it was a natural expansion of their vision, talents, and offerings. They’ll answer questions about why you probably can’t really “plunge in your tub at home for free”, how to begin and maintain a cold plunge practice, and why cold therapy is growing in popularity by leaps and bounds. They also give a little insight into what it was like to appear on Shark Tank to pitch their business and share updates with us for the first time publicly! If you’re thinking about adding cold plunge, you won’t want to miss this episode! You’ll pick up tips on pricing, setup, and learn from their experiences launching the plunge in their float centers first. Links Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
What happens when you cross a commercial construction expert, a float center owner, and a general contractor? You get Jamie Gagne. While he was still wrapped up in the commercial construction space, Jamie was introduced to floating, and like many float center owners, became enamored with the practice. He built his own tank, and then eventually opened his own center and has helped build several centers now. In this episode, Jamie shares his lessons learned after not soundproofing his first location. You’ll hear tips for soundproofing, sealing the space so the salt doesn’t destroy it, and strategies for where to spend and where to save. He gives away a powerful tip about how to work with and talk to a general contractor when you’re building your own center: start with detailed plans from a good draftsman or architect. If you’re thinking about opening a float center, or are making improvements to your own, you won’t want to miss this one. Links Email Jamie at Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
If you’ve been living with your head in the sand (like Drew), you might not have heard the biggest news to hit the float world in YEARS. It’s been a twinkle in Dr. Justin Feinstein’s eye for many years, but at last, the Float Research Collective is ready for an official launch. In this episode, Dr. Feinstein joins the crew to talk about what the FRC is, what he’s been doing with it, where it’s going, and most importantly, how you can get involved. This project is a bridge between float therapy and the medical community. As funds are raised, they’ll be used to facilitate clinical research that will help promote floating as a respected, effective, and common tool for combating stress, anxiety, pain, and more. Imagine a world where anyone has access to float when they need it. Imagine the ripple effect on society as more and more people are able to reduce their suffering and show up each day as the best versions of themselves - all of us walking around with that post-float glow. It’s hard not to be inspired and excited when you hear Dr. Feinstein speak about his vision. Sign up for your own team fundraiser and help make it happen! Links ( Float Research Collective Social Media links ( Sponsors HelmBot ( Float Tank Association ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
Whew. Float Conference 2022 was one for the record books! The crew is back from Portland and recovering from the shenanigans (among other things). _Warning: This one’s for the float fam, but not for your young fam. You’ll hear some light adult language not suitable for little ears. _ You’ll hear a recap of their favorite things - the workshops, the speakers, the venue, the FOOD, and more! Some highlights included sales and membership workshops, the latest research about floating and anorexia nervosa, the launch of the Float Research Collective fundraisers, and Dylan’s love affair with a cardigan. If you missed out on the fun, be sure to tune in to experience a little of the salty love – and to hear where we’ll be heading for Float Con 2023! Links Graham and Ashkahn's Cheat Sheet ( Sponsors HelmBot ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
Let’s get this clear first: stop calling it red light therapy. We stand corrected. You may have heard of this hot new therapy that’s been taking off across the globe, but in this episode, you’ll discover that it’s not a new therapy, and it’s not “red light therapy”. It is, however, the medicine of the future - the very same medicine that you saw in Star Trek when someone went to the sick bay, was treated by a laser beam, and healed. In this episode, James Carroll, founder and CEO of Thor Photomedicine joined us to talk about photobiomodulation therapy, or PBMT. He’s a world-renowned expert in PBMT - a walking, talking, breathing encyclopedia of information about the benefits of this powerful therapy that’s backed by thousands of peer-reviewed scientific studies. James shares inspiring stories about how PBM has helped patients across the globe with everything from chronic pain to athletic recovery and even a specific disease that causes blindness. With more than 100 names for the therapy, it’s hard to sort out the differences between devices and treatments, but James clarifies some of that as he describes what to look for and what benefits to expect if you’re considering adding red light therapy, errrr, photobiomodulation therapy, to your center. Be sure to stop by the Thor Photomedicine booth at the Float Conference to try it out yourself! Links Sponsors HelmBot ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
258: Open Swim!

258: Open Swim!


You know what they say, “When Kim’s away, the co-hosts will play….” Maybe that’s not the saying, but this one is a hoot! It’s no secret that your co-hosts have become fast friends over the years on the mic together, so in this episode, you’ll get a glimpse of what it’s like when the crew gets together (minus one). Expect no structure. Expect no specific topic of discussion. Expect lots of laughs, and know that you’ll likely walk away feeling a little lighter. Gloria dishes on her latest crush, you’ll hear about Dylan’s “other” cat, and Drew is buying a cow but also used to be in that business. (These are the things you won’t hear on most episodes - except Gloria’s crushes, of course.) And you’ll also hear some insider scoop about the latest happenings with the FTA (Floatation Tank Association), because we’re not all fun and games. And just like our group text messages, you might think the conversation is winding down, but then it picks back up with someone crying over Shark Tank. Sponsors HelmBot ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
257: Hiring a Manager

257: Hiring a Manager


When is it time to hire a manager? Why would you? What do you look for if you make the choice? The gang dives in on this weeks episode! Sponsors HelmBot ( I-Sopod Float Tank ( Mindfull Solutions ( Art of the Float Store (
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