What is Laughter Yoga? + How You Can Use It To Make Your Life More Awesome! | EP 20

Do you ever just want more happiness in your life?

Do you ever long to laugh, giggle, smile and feel good?

Do you ever wonder… “How can I put more of these good, awesome feelings into my life?!?!”

Well, you’re in luck because today I’m going to show you how you can make your life super awesome with a little something called Laughter Yoga. 

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Okay… so what is Laughter Yoga?

Laughter Yoga is a unique form of group exercise where anyone can laugh for no reason! You don’t need jokes, humor, or comedy to participate in laughter yoga (though funny faces and silliness can definitely be involved). 

Laughter is initiated in the group through various exercises and soon turns into real, contagious laughter through eye contact and childlike playfulness.

It’s called Laughter Yoga because it combines laughing with yoga breathing techniques, not because you’ll be doing any downward facing dog poses. However, stretching can be a part of laughter yoga sessions. This combination of laughter and yoga breathing brings more oxygen to the body and the brain, while expelling stale air in the lungs. This makes one feel more energetic and healthy after practicing laughter yoga.

Laughter Yoga is based on scientific research, which states that the body can’t distinguish between real and fake laughter, if done with willingness. You get the same benefits either way. So, even if you aren’t feeling particularly joyful, you can stimulate laughter and eventually it will become real, making you feel much more awesome. You can read up on the latest research on Laughter Yoga at LaughterYoga.org.

It was started in 1995 by Dr. Madan Kataria in a Mumbai park with just 5 people in India. Since then, Laughter Yoga has exploded! There are now over 1,000 laughter clubs in over 100 countries around the world.

So, you know why laughter is important, but why do you need laughter yoga?

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3 Reasons Why You Should Practice Laughter Yoga

Laughter should be sustained for at least 10-15 minutes to get the maximum health benefits. When was the last time you laughed for 10-15 minutes on command? Probably never, unless you’re just naturally giggly. This is why you should practice laughter yoga! You can use the exercises to stimulate a sustained 10-15 minutes of laughter. Since it is a form of exercise, you can laugh as long as you want. When we laugh throughout the day, it’s usually only for 3-4 seconds at a time. This is not nearly long enough to get the full benefits of laughing.

Laughter should be deep and hearty laughter from the diaphragm. It should be a big belly laugh, which is not always socially acceptable. Laughter yoga provides as safe environment to belly laugh to your heart’s content!

Don’t leave your laughter to chance. Laughter yoga is laughing unconditionally. You don’t have to wait for something funny to happen. You make laughter happen at any time. If you leave laughter to chance, based on humor, it may not happen. Use laughter yoga to be sure that you get the health and mood boosting benefits of laughing in your life.

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How Often Should You Laugh?

Ideally, you should laugh for 10-15 minutes every day. If you’ve never done this before, that can be a lot of laughing. Try to practice your laughter exercises as often as you can and work up to every day if possible. Just make sure that you get your 10-15 minutes in at a time. Remember, it’s gotta be sustained! Don’t just laugh for 3 minutes in the morning and then laugh 4 more minutes later that day. Unless that’s in addition to your 10-15 minute practice ;D

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A word about safety and laughter

Just like any other type of exercise, you may want to take precautions if you have certain medical conditions. Including hernia, incontinence, hemorrhoids, heart problems, chest pain, pregnancy, major surgeries, epilepsy, cold and flu, or severe backache. If you have any of these conditions, first consult your doctor before practicing Laughter Yoga.

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Health Benefits of Laughter Yoga

Laughter Yoga has sooooo many health benefits! The best part is that you can start feeling the benefits of laughter right away. It is especially good for increasing energy, reducing stress-related illnesses, and balancing your emotional state. Research has shown that laughing causes a kind of “internal jogging” that massages your internal organs and increases circulation, which flushes your body of toxins and allows you to operate at peak performance!

Here are five awesome health benefits of laughter yoga:

  1. Laughter yoga will instantly increase your mood and you’ll find yourself bursting into more spontaneous laughter throughout the day

  2. Laughter yoga is a healthy exercise that brings more oxygen into the body, reducing physical, mental, and emotional stress all at the same time.

  3. Laughter yoga strengthens the immune system and, according to my training manual, may help a variety of conditions, including hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, depression, arthritis, allergies, asthma, bronchitis, backache, fibromyalgia, migraine headaches, menstrual disorders, cancer and many others. 

  4. Laughter yoga will improve relationships because laughter is a positive energy that allows you to connect with others more easily.

  5. Laughter yoga gives you a positive attitude, even in tough times, by increasing your optimism and positive mental state.

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Do a one minute laughter challenge!

Start at minute 8:45 of the episode to join in on the laughter challenge! We are going to laugh for one minute straight for no reason at all, other than I told you to!

Make sure that you are somewhere you can do this privately, otherwise you will probably get some pretty interesting looks from other people.

If someone else is around, get them to join in with you! It’s much easier to do a laughter challenge with others.

If you are by yourself, shrug your shoulders while laughing, as if saying “I don’t know why I’m laughing!”. Looking in a mirror can also be really helpful to make yourself laugh longer :)

Alright! Let’s do this! :D

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What did you think!?!

How do you feel? Do you feel more energized?!! Maybe a bit out of breath? Sounds like you need more practice :D

Are you curious about what laughter yoga exercises look like? Do you want to try more? Do you think this whole thing is crazy (yet you listened this far into the recording? Whatever your response… I want to hear about it! Comment below or send me a message on Instagram @positivelydelighted

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Thank you so much for listening to this episode of The Positively Delighted Show! If you like the show and you’ve been learning a lot from the content, I would love if you could go to iTunes, subscribe to the show, and leave a review. You would be my favorite person ever! Thank you so much again and I hope you have a Positively Delighted day. See you in the next episode <3