Laughter - laughter yoga and facilitation
Laughter Yoga was developed by an Indian MD, Dr Madan Kataria. It combines techniques of Yogic breathing with laughter exercises, to promote collective laughter amongst a group of participants: usually between 15 and 25 in what have become known as Laughter Clubs.
Laughter Yoga does not involve joke telling, comedy or humour - rather participants take part in a series of laughter and breathing exercises which stimulate both body and mind.
It is scientifically recognised that the body cannot differentiate between simulated and real laughter: undertaking laughter exercises soon leads to real and contagious laughter within the group.
Laughter is Cheap Medicine - Lord Byron
The physiological and health benefits of laughter have been well researched. Prolonged spells of vigorous laughter beyond 15 minutes can:
develop the immune system through generation of white blood cells that kill off viral and other infections;
release endorphins – natural painkillers giving feelings of well-being, a natural high and state of being energized;
result in enhanced oxygenization. – increasing oxygen to the brain, benefiting the respiratory system,lowering blood pressure;
reduce stress – laughter reduces levels of adrenalin and cortisol;
exercise diaphragm, and various other muscle groups in the body.
We are the Champions!
I was thrilled to come third in the recent UK National Laughter Championship, and very proud of my laughter partner who took the title. I am able to deliver laughter sessions as:
'laughter clubs' as part of on-going well being type programmes;
parallel sessions as part of large scale away days and conferences e.g. PSS Away Days, Well-Being Days;
a team development activity assuming all members of the team have agreed to this;
laughter festivals and competitions.
I've also begun to include musical activities for longer sessions. Whatever your laughter needs do get in touch for a chat about possibilities.
Laughter and Psychological Well-being
Laughter Yoga also promotes a sense of communion and sociability with others. It provides opportunity for freeing up our spontaneous and fun loving free child so often censored by parental influences and messages.
‘Healthy laughter activates the chemistry for the will to live. It reflects joy and insight, attracts friends and lovers, breaks tension in uncomfortable social situations, and increases the capacity to fight against disease. By expanding the chest, increasing respiration, forcing poisoned air from lung cells, laughter relaxes the body and helps stimulate the balance which is called health.’ Therapy Doesn’t Always Hurt.
Muriel James (1979) Transactional Analysis Journal.
It is also great fun, and a laugh (sic)
Laughter and Sociability
Check on You Tube there are loads of videos similar to the one on the left. Other links:
Have Fun - I do - with Pedro the Spanish Parrot (with an Irish accent)