Healing with zero-gravity? Lexington’s only float tanks offer an experience many can’t match

Source on High is a wellness Co-op and Movement located on High street near Woodland Park. The co-op is Kentucky’s first Float Center sporting two float tanks which house 1200 pounds of epsom salt in 93.5 degree water. Float facilitator, Sarajane Doty explains that tank allows the user to experience zero-gravity as a source of relaxation and healing. Photo by Arden Barnes | Staff

Rick Childress

Can you gain something from feeling nothing? Spending an hour in this pod could answer that question.

“It’s amazing what the brain can do on its own when it has kind of no stimulus,” said Corinne LaReau, owner of Source on High, a holistic healing center just north of campus near Woodland Park.

Laying atop 1,200 pounds of Epsom salt, “floaters” step into an experience that seeks to balance a person by removing many of the elements of usual sensory experience– ideally allowing the person to relax and focus entirely on what goes on inside his or her own head. 

The denser-than-the-Dead Sea salt concentration is contained in a large, sci-fi pod.

Floating on the salt gives the user the experience of zero gravity. Combine that with darkness and silence—although LaReau stressed that people can use lights and music—and a person can experience what it feels like to float weightlessly through the darkness.

LaReau said this sensation can heal or even help one think more creatively.

“It stimulates the creative element or problem solving because you don’t have to think about a bunch of stuff and because you’re in silence and darkness—your brain is free,” LaReau said. 

Several famous athletes, including many Olympic athletes, and ideologues, primarily Joe Rogen, have publicly endorsed floating

“A lot of athletes float,” LaReau said. “A lot of major athletic teams have tanks. I’m surprised that UK doesn’t have tanks yet, or none of the basketball players or anybody has come to float. It’s shocking to me.”

She said floating can help an athlete or an artist click into “different ways of playing the game.”

Floating in the pod for an hour or more can help alleviate a litany of physical and mental injuries, LaReau said. It can help alleviate stress, depression, arthritis or even common body aches. 

LaReau, a UK graduate, said floating could greatly benefit students. In the past, Source on High has offered discounts to students, and she said that she could offer them again.

LaReau said the pods can help a college student deal with all of the stress that “comes down on you as a younger person who has the element of freedom but the responsibility of adulthood.”

With the possible discount, friends could come in together, both float at half price and be able to talk about their shared experience, she said.

Sarajane Doty, the Float Facilitator and former UK faculty, said the pods and Source on High is great for the stresses that faculty expericence.

“You know how crazy you guys get at the end of the semester—we’re right there with you,” Doty said.

LaReau opened Source on High in 2014, with the intention of helping one person at a time. She graduated from UK a few decades ago as a major in advertising with an environmental studies minor.

At first, she wanted to make a difference for the environment in the advertising business, but she became disillusioned.

“I decided to go into this aspect of helping one person at a time,” LaReau said. “Hoping that that makes the difference that I was wanting to create at that time. Still do—probably now, 12 years later I’ve probably worked on thousands of people.”

Source on High offers yoga, body rolling, meditation and several other healing services to go along with Lexington’s only float tanks.

For $50, those interested can float for an hour, $80 for ninety minutes or pay at a monthly rate.