By Sam Davis, BHS, CPT, FNS
Most yoga classes are designed to bring you complete relaxation and zen, but a new type of yoga is becoming more popular: laughter yoga. It has actually been around since 1995 and has since expanded to 5,000 studios.
The idea behind Laughter Yoga is to get you to exercise in a way that will make you laugh. Laughter reduces the stress response by releasing endorphins that help you feel more relaxed, boosts immunity, and combats depression, which is why Laughter Yoga has been so successful.
How it works: Each instructor will explain to the class the Why’s and the How’s behind laughter and what it does to your body. He or she will explain how it’s facilitated, and remind you how important it is to not let out fake laughter; it needs to be a full body, belly laughter. But, it can start as a fake laugh to facilitate a real laugh.
Most people say that it feels a bit ridiculous, especially belly laughing in a room full of strangers, but they always come back for more sessions. Most people can laugh themselves out of stress in minutes in these classes, and that’s where the release and relaxation stems from.
If you’re interested in trying Laughter Yoga for yourself, head on over to Laughter Yoga University to find a class near you.