Laughter Yoga

What does Yoga laughter do for you?

  • Laughter yoga stimulates heart and blood circulation
  • improves lung capacity and exercises abdominal muscles
  • can be done regularly regardless of your fitness level
  • Laughter yoga lowers levels of epinephrine and cortisol (stress hormones), while upping levels of endorphines (the feel-good chemical manufactured by your own body)

Who invented Laughter Yoga?

Laughter Yoga started from a small experiment carried out by Dr. Madan Kataria, a family physician from Mumbai, India, in March, 1995.

Dr. Kataria was writing an article titled 'Laughter the Best Medicine' for his monthly health magazine 'My Family Doctor.' The outcome of his research for this article really surprised him.

His research indicated that decades of scientific research had proven that laughter has both a preventative and a therapeutic effect.

On March 13, 1995, he thought that he would start a 'Laughter Club.' At 7am he went to a local park and enticed four people to laugh along with him.

Within a few days, the small group had grown to 50 people. They would tell each other jokes, or anecdotes and laugh together. However, after two weeks they ran out of jokes and people grew disinterested.

Rather than abandon the experiment, Dr. Kataria had noticed that when one person laughed, it usually caused the whole group to laugh. The reason being that the brain cannot distinguish between pretend or fake laughter and real laughter.

He unknowingly stumbled on a type of yoga that was to become known as 'Laughter Yoga.'

His wife, Madhuri Kataria, a yoga teacher helped him on the yoga connection to laughter. The concept caught on so well and quick, that since that day in 1995, over 5000 'Yoga Laughter Clubs' have been started in over 40 countries around the world.

Find a 'Yoga Laughter Club' near you

You can find a 'Yoga Laughter Club; near you by visiting www.laughteryoga.ca/where.htm

Yoga laughter sessions get people to laugh for no reason. The laughter is combined with simple yoga breathing techniques. Laughter Yoga relieves stress, boosts immunity, fights depression and facilitates transforming people into more positive thinkers.

Dr. Kataria explains that laughter has two sources, one from the body and the other from the mind. As adults, we make judgments about what is funny and what isn't.

Children, laugh more frequently than adults, they laugh from the body. They laugh all the time while they are playing. Laughter Yoga cultivates your childlike playfulness. We all have a child within us wanting to play.

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