What is Laughter Yoga?
The delightful Tess Sanderson explains to PhysioPod just what Laughter Yoga is, the benefits and why she became a laughter yoga leader - thanks Tess - you are an inspiration to us all.. x
What is Laughter Yoga?
"Laughter Yoga is an inclusive group activity performed under the direction of a Certified Yoga Leader. Performed when seated, standing, lying on the floor - whatever you can manage and is comfortable - is the gauge for your participation. No special clothing required, but I advise comfortable clothes to let you move freely, an open mind and a big smile helps too.
On searching for an accessible form of exercise / relaxation, which I could manage with my mobility issues, I found Laughter Yoga. In other exercise groups I felt excluded or had to severely modify my activity to the point where there was seemingly no value in actually attending. Now, I get all the benefits of a workout and can fully participate in Laughter Yoga sessions.
Why is it called laughter yoga? The word yoga comes from the Sanskrit root Yuj which means 'to get hold of or harmonise and integrate.' In modern terms, this relates to getting to grips with our lives, trying to integrate all areas of our lives so that our body is in harmony with what is going on in our minds, our spirits and in society as a whole.
Can Anyone do Laughter Yoga?
Laughter Yoga does not claim to be any sort of miracle cure and should not be used as a substitute for a medical consultation. It is a natural complementary form of healing which can be powerful. There is some physical strain involved and a rise in intra-abdominal pressure, so laughter yoga could be contradicted for those who suffer from any diseases that are in a severe or uncontrolled state.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF LAUGHTER YOGA
Benefits can be felt from the very first session. Laughter Yoga is a complete package for physical, mental, social and spiritual well being. It helps to develop a sense of humour and also to bring more childlike playfulness into our lives.
- Raised energy levels
- Reduced blood pressure / stress
- Help with depression, heart disease, asthma, arthritis, allergies, stiff muscles.
- Promotes positivity, good moods, cheerfulness.
- Laugh more frequently than before.
- Brings laughter and joy into their lives
Other benefits of Laughter Yoga:
- When life has become more sedentary and stressful, an exercise routine can be difficult to stick to – laughter yoga is a great alternative.
- Brings more oxygen in to the body - a major upkeep of wellness.
- Increases Blood Circulation
- Acts as a Stress Buster
- Helps improve self confidence
- Enables people to communicate and express their emotions – generates positive feelings and alleviates negative strains of thought.
- Maintains emotional balance.
- Tones facial muscles – makes you look younger!
- Boost the immune system – laughter increases immunogobulin levels that help fight infection and increase the number of Natural Killer Cells in the blood, which plays a key role in cancer prevention. The body's T-cells, natural killer cells and antibodies all show increased signs of increased activity. Disease fighting proteins increase in gamma interferon, a blood chemical that transmits messages in the nervous system and stimulates the immune system. An increase in lgB (immunogobulin B) brings defence against the entry of infectious organisms through the respiratory tract.
- Scientific studies have furthermore proved that laughter is the simplest answer to a healthy heart.
- Has helped thousands to overcome severe depression all over the world, by using laughter as a physical exercise rather than using cognitive humour.
- Helps manage anxiety and panic attacks.
- Laughter Yoga is a natural painkiller – it releases endorphins, natural opiates that are more potent than equivalent amounts of morphine.
A group session is £60 - up to 25 miles radius of PE12/Spalding - after that it just mileage charges to cover travel expenses, or train costs etc. if appropriate. Group session is usually up to 18-20 people but other numbers can be discussed (may necessitate writing a different type of session) I have holistic insurance and am about to apply for DBS (previously held through the NHS)
Tess Sanderson Dip RSA / Certified Laughter Yoga Leader