Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Laughter Yoga Anthem

This great Laughter Yoga anthem was created by Jan MacQuarrie and Susan Lapp-Guelph from Orangeville, Canada.

This Laughter Yoga song and dance was developed for our Laughter Yoga sessions in South Africa. The lyrics and music is by Andre Combrinck, a local artist in South Africa. This song (Gypsy) in our Laughter Show - 'What A Laugh'. More info: www.laughter4africa.org.za - download the song for Free!
Laughter Yoga Exercises - Laugh Dance & Clap

World Peace Through Laughter

One of Dr. Kataria’s objectives for Laughter Yoga is to promote World Peace through Laughter. Some people find this idea fanciful, but an understanding of the science of emotions and emotional contagion in particular shows how this might be achieved.

The practice of Laughter Yoga causes the body to release into the bloodstream high concentrations of communication substances related to feelings of happiness, warmth, unconditional love, bonding, tolerance, forgiveness, generosity, and compassion. Let’s call this a joy cocktail.

The presence of this ‘JOY COCKTAIL’ of hormones and neuro-peptides precludes the production of other hormones and neuro-peptides that correspond with hatred, fear, violence, jealousy, aggression and the emotions associated with war and oppression.

By practicing Laughter Yoga in groups or laughter clubs, the level of joy cocktail is raised to high concentrations through the multiplier effect: People leaving Laughter Yoga sessions go forth and interact with many people who are in turn affected to varying degrees by this powerful emotional state of joy. They in turn ‘infect’ other people they come into contact with… and so on.

Laughter in a Nutshell

Laughter Yoga

Studies have shown that laughter reduces stress, lifts your mood and is a powerful antidote to depression and anxiety. It also has some physical advantages – it’s been known to boost your immune system and to help to control blood pressure, to name a few.

"The act of vigorous laughter energises our physiology in much the same way that aerobic exercise does, increasing heart and respiration rate and activating various muscle groups. After an episode of laughter, however, our bodies enjoy a relaxation effect," reports a US study on Workplace Laughter and Personal Efficacy by Beckman, Regier and Young. The study findings were published in The Journal of Primary Prevention.

It all sounds good and well, you might say, but in between deadlines, traffic jams, mortgage payments and escalating crime rates it’s not that easy to find something to laugh about.

Fake it ‘till you feel it
There are, however, ways to reap the benefits of laughter without humour or comedy.

In 1995 Dr Madan Kataria, a physician from Mumbai, India, developed Laughing Yoga – a series of laughing techniques designed to imitate laughter through playful exercises. It quickly gained popularity, and today there are more than 5 000 laughter yoga centres around the world.

"Your body can’t tell the difference between pretend laughter and spontaneous laughter," says Martin Combrinck from Laughter for Africa.

"Anybody can laugh for 15 to 20 minutes without a sense of humour, jokes or comedy," says Combrinck. "In laughter yoga we use laughter as a tool, not an emotion. Simulated laughter soon becomes real when practised in a group."

How do they make you laugh?
It might be difficult to imagine what one might laugh at if there are no jokes, humour or comedy.

A laughing yoga session kicks off with childlike, almost silly, exercises – such as greeting one another with a laugh (even a fake one) rather than saying "hello". Another amusing exercise is fake laughter, where you "Ho-ho-ho-ha-ha-ha" like a hysterical Santa Claus. The fake laugh quickly turns in to real laughter when one person laughs at another, or at him/herself. You laugh because they laugh, they laugh back – and the next thing you know everyone’s hollering like a pack of hyenas.

The second part of laughter yoga is called "laughter meditation". The group members sit down in silence for a few minutes and then start faking laughter until it flows spontaneously. The session ends with some relaxation and breathing.

What is its purpose?
"We laugh as a way to improve health, increase wellbeing, and promote peace in the world through personal transformation," says Combrinck.

What’s more, a recent US study on the effect of laughter yoga on employees’ sense of self-efficacy in the workplace found that purposeful laughter actually enhances employees’ morale, resilience, and personal efficacy beliefs.

A study conducted in India, which measured the effect of laughter on stress levels in the workplace, showed a significant decrease in stress levels reflected in reduced heart rate and blood pressure, reduced cortisol levels and an 11% decrease in perceived stress levels.

Funny business
It seems laughter yoga is the trendy new thing to do at conferences and business meetings. "It’s very popular in the corporate environment," says Combrinck.

Laughter for Africa also gives laughter yoga seminars. "It breaks down barriers and social hierarchy – bosses and employees connect in a new way," says Combrinck. "Laughter yoga boosts creativity as well as productivity in the workplace."


What is Laughter Yoga?

Laughter Yoga is a revolutionary idea – simple and profound. An exercise routine, it is sweeping the world and is a complete wellbeing workout.
The brainchild of Dr. Madan Kataria, a Physician from Mumbai, India, launched the first Laughter Club at a Park on March 13, 1995, with merely a handful of persons. Today, it has become a worldwide phenomenon with more than 6000 Social Laughter Clubs in about 70 countries. 


Laughter Yoga combines Unconditional Laughter with Yogic Breathing (Pranayama).

Anyone can Laugh for No Reason, without relying on humor, jokes or comedy. Laughter is simulated as a body exercise in a group; with eye contact and childlike playfulness, it soon turns into real and contagious laughter.  


The concept of Laughter Yoga is based on a scientific fact that the body cannot differentiate between fake and real laughter. One gets the same physiological and psychological benefits.

Participants of Laughter Yoga report significant general health improvements. Many have felt a reduction in the frequency of respiratory infections like common cold and flu, and some others reported overcoming depression, relief/cure from chronic medical problems. With people's committed participation, Laughter Yoga has helped many people become healthier.

Scientifically Proven

Clinical research on Laughter Yoga methods, conducted at the University of Graz in Austria; Bangalore, India; and in the United States has proved that Laughter lowers the level of stress hormones (epinephrine, cortisol, etc) in the blood. It fosters a positive and hopeful attitude. It is less likely for a person to succumb to stress and feelings of depression and helplessness, if one is able to laugh away the troubles.

Welcome to Laughter Clubs SA

What is a Laughter Club?

A Laughter Club is informal groups of people who get together to laugh as a form of exercise. They are fully independent, not-for-profit, non-political, non-religious and non competitive community-based associations of diverse people who choose to be happy. Everyone is welcome. Each club defines its own meeting frequency.

There are more than 6,000 Laughter Clubs in over 70 countries around the world, which offer fun for people of all ages when they take part in a thirty minute Laughter Yoga session. In some countries people begin each day with laughter, attending their local Laughter Yoga Club.

Make sure to find and join your nearest Laughter Club in South Africa!

Watch this video on a Laughter Club in Victoria, Australia.

Some Benefits of Joining a Laughter Club

•Communication skills improve.
•Self-confidence improves. Introverts loose their fear of speaking in public.
•You develop more connections and make new friends.
•You get to be in the news (Laughter Yoga is very media friendly).
•Your capacity to laugh goes up significantly, adding more laughter into your life.
•Your ability to cope with challenges improv
es a lot.

•Your health improves.
•You forget your worries.
•You go home with a refreshed mind.
•You contribute to making the world a better place. It is the responsibility of every laughter club member to help to make those around them happy. Laughter should be reflected in one’s behavior and attitudes towards others. The members of laughter clubs do not only laugh, but they also practice ways and means of sensible living.
** Etc.......
Contact Us for more info: http://www.laughter4africa.org.za