Jim Hefner about why floating is good for you

Record-breaking NBA player Stephen Curry and some of his teammates float regularly after one of their trainers, Lachlan Penfold, introduced them to sensory deprivation therapy. “I can get away from all the stresses on the court and life, but obviously it has some physical benefits as well,” says the MVP. Judging from his performance, we won’t doubt that – but also because research has proven these effects.
But what’s so great about laying in a dark tank full of salt water for hours, where you’re isolated from people, sounds, and visuals?
I’ve tried floating a few times, for the first time at the Float Lab in Westwood (read about it here), and then at Just Float in Pasadena. While I noticed a few differences between the two places (read about them here), I also interviewed one of the owners of Just Float, Jim Hefner about his passion for floating and how the largest float center in the world came to be.
Jim first heard about floating from Joe Rogan about six years ago, but it took him another three years to try it because there weren’t many sensory deprivation tanks available. As soon as he got out of the tank in Laguna Beach, where he had floated for his very first time, Jim knew that this was going to be his business. “What happened to me in there is profound,” he remembers.
A few months later, after learning everything there was to know, Jim hired his own crew of designers and engineers to create their own tanks, because he wasn’t satisfied with the existing equipment.
Today, Jim knows that his business changes people’s lives. Proof for that is the overwhelmingly positive feedback which can be found in the journals of the lobby or in the grooming room: Visitors felt as if they were catapulted back into their mother’s womb at the very start of their lives on earth, others describe a high on happiness or call it a “contribution to peace.”
More than half of the guests become regular guest whereas only less than 1% walk out, mostly due to anxiety or claustrophobia.
Jim attributes being more kind, creative and stress-resistant to regular floating because it make him feel “comfortable, relaxed, and full of gratitude.” Laying in the salt water at least twice a week gives him insight on how he operates, his motivations and fears, and has improved the quality of his relationships because it “tends to open people’s hearts.”
To share this experience with many more people, he plans to expand his business nationally, and possibly internationally.

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