One Hour of Silence :: A Beginner’s Guide to Floating


An hour of silence

Disclosure :: This post is sponsored by Float Milwaukee. The author received complimentary services and compensation in exchange for this review, however all thoughts and opinions are our own. This surprising experience available right here in Milwaukee deserves to be shared! 

Like most busy moms, my mind runs a million miles an hour. I am constantly managing the chaos of family life, work, soccer practices, laundry and even managing to feed these people from time to time. When I lay down at night, I have a hard time turning my brain off and I often wake up feeling like I didn’t rest at all. 

And then the kids get up, chaos returns and the volume is cranked all the way up to eleven. (Name that movie!)

So when the opportunity arose to visit the flotation pod at Float Milwaukee, I was…..well….skeptical. At best. In fact, I was downright unconvinced and a wee bit uncomfortable. I mean, it sounded cool, but spending an hour floating in a sensory deprivation chamber filled with salt water? Sounds like something out of Stranger Things, not a way for me to relax. 

I. Was. Wrong. 

If you’re getting ready to give floating a try for the first time, check out these tips from one beginner to another to make your experience fantastic. 

Float Milwaukee

What is Floating? 

“Floating” is the common term for experiencing flotation therapy. Basically, you get into a flotation pod (also commonly referred to as a sensory deprivation chamber) that is filled with 10 inches of water with 900 pounds of Epsom salts dissolved in the water to create an environment that allows you to float effortlessly in the water. You spend an hour or more in a back float inside the pod, allowing your mind to slow down and your body to fully relax without fighting gravity.  

Why Floating? 

The benefits of floating have been touted by people from all walks of life, from professional athletes like Pewaukee native JJ Watt, to regular moms like me who go in there looking forward to an hour of silence away from the chaos and the kids who winds up experiencing a state of total relaxation and a chance for my muscles to both rest and recharge at the same time. 


First off all, Float Milwaukee is located right next to Purple Door Ice Cream and Indulgence Chocolatiers is right around the corner. I mean……YES. What else would be the perfect way to finish off your hour of relaxation and rejuvenation than Milwaukee-made ice cream or chocolate? There is street parking available right in front of the building and additional spots across the street or around the corner. You shouldn’t drink coffee for several hours before your float, so you can also walk down the street to grab your latte at Colectivo on Water St. after your float. 

Tank2 (1)

What’s it REALLY like?

Remember how I said I was skeptical? I honestly arrived at Float Milwaukee, greeted smiling owner Andy Larson — fresh out of his floating pod — and issued him a challenge that if this crazy thing can slow down MY mind, I’ll be impressed. I was escorted to my private room, where I stripped down (yup…..naked), popped in the earplugs supplied by my host, and took a quick shower to wash off any lotions, soaps, hair products, etc. Save yourself some trouble and just skip wearing makeup to your floating session. Then, you step into the pod, close the lid and lay back. A gentle voice will let you know your session has started, you can adjust the lighting and music in your pod and then you just close your eyes and slip into oblivion. 

And that’s exactly how it feels. I honestly lost track of where my skin ended and the water began. I had no sense of time. I’m pretty sure I dozed off a couple times, but I’m not entirely sure. Owner Andy later told me that’s exactly the state of mind that is optimal for floating success. 

Float Milwaukee
Me and my pod. It’s about to go down.

Tips for Beginners

I imagine that seasoned visitors to Float Milwaukee would not run into these issues, but a rookie like me encountered a couple snags that I am sharing with you now so you can learn from my mistakes and make your experience even better. 

  • Don’t forget to turn off the light in the room BEFORE you climb in your pod. Otherwise, you’ll be laying there trying to get all zen only to see the light peeking through the lid of your pod and utter a curse word before you have to get out and start all over. 
  • There will be a spray bottle of fresh water hanging on a bar just outside your pod. If, like me, you accidentally get salt water in your eyes, this thing is your LIFE SAVER. Locate it right away so you are able to find it quickly with your eyes shut tight. 
  • Claustrophobic? Honestly, you don’t feel enclosed at all. It feels a lot like you are just floating in space rather than in a pod. You can also control the levels of light and music in your pod to make it comfortable. But, if you are really freaked, you can always leave the lid of your pod cracked open a bit. 
  • Don’t forget to go to the bathroom immediately before you start your floating session. Nothing busts your chill quicker than suddenly needing to pee. 
  • Skip shaving the morning of your float. If your skin is extra sensitive, the salt water can sting a bit. 
  • Bring your toiletry bag. After you get done with your float, there is a delightful area where you can fix your hair, apply makeup, etc. Then, relax in the lobby with a nice cup of Milwaukee’s own Urbal Tea. 

To sum up? I never in a million years thought I would like floating. But it rocks. For the busy mom who never seems to get a quiet second to herself, this is 60 minutes of pure heaven. Do yourself a favor and check out Float Milwaukee and you will be convinced.


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Owner and co-founder of Milwaukee Mom, Sarah is a full-time working mom of three rough-and-tumble boys who like their jeans ripped and their hands dirty. She has lived in Wisconsin her whole life, attending UW-Madison and finally landing in the Milwaukee area in 2012. Sarah is a former English teacher and is currently enjoying a season of strong coffee and being a small business owner! She loves a good book, a flavorful craft beer and watching her Badgers and Packers get a W. Sarah is mama to three sons.


  1. I’ve always wanted to try this but have been afraid of failing asleep and drowning. I thought it was a deep pool but 10″ isn’t too bad.

    • Andy mentioned that this is a common fear, but really it’s almost impossible unless you actually purposely flip over onto your stomach! The salt makes you so buoyant that you float so easily. And I did fall asleep! I think….. 🙂

      Give it a shot!

  2. I’ve heard of this, but, like you mentioned, have been super skeptical. I’m so glad to hear that it’s totally amazing and worth it. An hour of TOTAL SILENCE, by myself sounds amazing! lol

    • Monica, I was VERY skeptical. I am not “new agey” at all so I really went into it just looking forward to an hour of quiet without kids, but it ended up really surprising me in a good way. I never expected to get as much mental rest out of it as I actually did. At first, I felt super ridiculous, but once my body calmed down and just relaxed into it, it was incredible. It’s hard to put into words!


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