This has got to be the easiest kind of yoga since the only thing that actually matters is the fact that you have to laugh. People find this kind of yoga unusual, however, it is actually pretty good for the mental and physical well-being of a person. There are about 400 laughter yoga clubs all over the United States and thousands all over the world.
WHAT IS LAUGHTER YOGA?
Laughter yoga is a kind of yoga that involves voluntary laughter. It is believed that voluntary laughter affects the psychological and physiological aspect in a really good way since it also has the same benefits as spontaneous laughter. This kind of yoga is most commonly done in groups and involves eye contact and jokes between the people in the group.
The reason is so that the forced laughter may turn into an actual and contagious laughter. This was first practiced during the 90s, where a group of old people would go to the park and just laugh. There was even a book written about laughter yoga in 2002, by Indian physician, Madan Kataria, entitled, Laugh For No Reason
“I have not seen anyone dying of laughter, but I know millions who are dying because they are not laughing.” – Dr. Madan Kataria
IS THERE A SCIENTIFIC VALIDITY FOR THIS?
There are some studies that actually indicated that this kind of yoga may have some medically benefits, especially when it comes to the cardiovascular health. An Oxford University study found that this is actually a good exercise therapy for people who are suffering from anxiety and depression because the pain thresholds become higher. According to this study, laughter actually produces an endorphin-mediated opiate effect.
“Laughter Yoga combines laughter with yoga breathing exercises. It is a perfect way to laugh and get exercise at the same time. It approaches laughter as a body exercise so it’s easy to laugh even if you’re depressed or in a bad mood. I’ve tried it and it works.” – Oprah Winfrey on Laughter Yoga
HOW DOES LAUGHTER YOGA WORK?
According to the Laughter Guru, Dr. Madan Kataria, laughter actually has the power to provide physical and holistic benefits to the human body. In a yoga class, an approximate of 10-15 minutes of laughter is what you will do, it is not just an ordinary short giggle, but a loud and deep belly laugh, that needs to come straight from the diaphragm. If you will try the laughter yoga, you must be open-minded and is willing to participate, because the philosophy of laughter yoga is to basically maintain a playful and childlike sense.
Most people rely on a sense of humor just to laugh, but with laughter yoga, you will basically commit to laughing on an everyday basis, to actually teach your mind and your body to laugh even if nothing is funny. The mind and the body are tied to the laughter yoga, when deep breathing, physical movements, and deep laughter gets combined, laughing will then be a form of exercise for you.
What technically happens during laughter yoga classes are exercises that involve, clapping your hands with rhythm and other synchronized movements. It also involves deep breaths while saying free chants, as well as animal sound exercises like the lion laughter exercise, playful singing is also a part of the laughter yoga.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF LAUGHTER YOGA?
If you’re going to be trying the laughter yoga, you must also be aware of all of its benefits. Laughter yoga can improve both your emotional and physical health.
• With laughter yoga, you will be able to handle your emotions better, especially the people who are suffering from anxiety, stress, and depression. With laughter yoga, you’ll be able to control your negative emotions.
• With laughter yoga, your mind will be convinced that you are indeed happy, and the prolonged laughter will actually make you feel joy. It will also distract you from whatever you’re currently going through, this is a good way to take a break and have positive thoughts.
• With laughter yoga classes, you’ll be able to meet new people and socialize with them, you might make new friends, who are going through the same phase as you.