MY FLOAT STORY
“Floating helped me walk again.”
When Laara, owner of Float Wellness, was 24 years old, she received a diagnosis that changed her life. Sharp pain in the bottoms of her feet migrated to her legs, and then the rest of her body. In a matter of weeks, she was crippled by pain, and was told by doctors she had severe rheumatoid arthritis, and would be bound to a wheelchair by the time she was 30.
But Laara refused to accept the prognosis she was given. She started seeking additional therapies to help ease her pain, which is when she discovered floating.
“Floating is good for the body, excellent for the mind, and necessary for the soul,” Laara says. “It changed my life. Actually, it saved my life.”
Suspending your body in warm water rich in magnesium can help many ailments, to which Laara can personally attest. After five years of living with her worsening diagnosis, there were times when Laara was required 24 hour care, in constant pain and requiring hospitalization and round-the-clock care. But through gentle therapies like floating, yoga and massage, Laara recovered her full physical capabilities, and since then, she hasn’t looked back. She even was able to volunteer at her local float centre, the Bodhi Tree where she was able to help other people with the healing float therapy experience.
Laara studied Kundalini Yoga, and a mere seven years after her diagnosis, she became a fully-accredited Kundalini Yoga Teacher. She was the first full time manager at Yoga West in Vancouver,
In 2001, Laara decided to take on the next challenge of her life: walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain. Trekking nearly 800 km while carrying a backpack through rough terrain in northern Spain is a major achievement for anyone, but given Laara’s medical history, it’s almost miraculous. And yet, Laara has not just walked it once, is coming up to her fourth time. Along the way, Laara met Hape Kerkeling, author of the international best-seller I’m Off, Then: Losing and Finding Myself on the Camino de Santiago. In fact, she was surprised to find herself featured in his book.
“I’m almost a little bit famous,” she jokes.
Laara moved to Sherwood Park in 2009, and studied massage therapy. After certifying as an RMT, she had the idea of combining massage therapy and float, and bringing the float experience to Strathcona County. Float Wellness opened its doors in 2014, and was so proud to win the 2015 Chamber of Commerce’s award for New Small Business of the year.
Laara is delighted to provide the unique wellness service of floating to this community, and hopes others experience the same healing that has changed the course of her life.