Laughter Yoga: Unlocking Joy and Wellness

Laughter Yoga: Daily laughter practices… by Dr Madan Kataria

Explaining the inception, the premise and the science behind laughter yoga.

“Laughter is wine for the soul—laughter soft, or loud and deep, tinged through with seriousness—the hilarious declaration made by man that life is worth living,” once wrote Sean O’Casey. Laughter makes us feel good and uplifts our spirits too. That is a good enough reason to laugh every day!

We all would like to laugh more. But the truth is, without an external stimulus, most of us can’t laugh. As a result, most of us don’t laugh as much as we ought to in our lives. To ensure we laugh enough, physician and founder of Laughing Club International, Dr. Madan Kataria has come up with a simple solution, Laughter Yoga—it inspires everyone to laugh for no reason at all. He says laughter has the power to wipe away negative emotions such as anger, fear, and anxiety and transform our lives.

In Laughter Yoga: Daily laughter practices for health and happiness, Dr. Kataria explains laughter yoga—its inception, its premise, the science behind it, how to incorporate it in our lives, and the benefits we can reap from practising it. Divided into five parts, the book is well-organised and comprehensive. Each section of the book is concise, without any digressions. Moreover, bullet points, subheads, and numbered lists present throughout the book make it easy to read and follow.

How many of us knew that by simply engaging in fake laughs, we can derive the same benefits that we’re bound to derive from genuine laughs?

Initially, the book might seem methodical and dry, but it is not devoid of interesting facts. For instance, how many of us knew that by simply engaging in fake laughs, we can derive the same benefits that we’re bound to derive from genuine laughs? Or that by simply imagining ourselves laugh during difficult times, can release happy hormones to uplift our spirit? Or that the power of breathing in laughter yoga can be compared to any aerobic exercise that increases heart rate and blood circulation? In Chapter 3, he writes: “Laughing for as long as possible helps keep the lung cells healthy and uses the abdominal muscles even in the absence of strenuous physical workouts.” Sprinkled with such facts backed by science, the book is a treasure house of knowledge.

Overall, Laughter Yoga is a do-it-yourself manual for anyone interested in trying laughter yoga. The book’s easy, step-by-step exercise regimes guide us to not just practice laughter in our lives but stimulate hope to restore our health and recover from chronic ailments too. The book delights and engages readers, and simultaneously provides a glimpse of spiritual enlightenment.


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