Laughter yoga sounds like a lot of fun, and indeed it is! What’s more, hasyayoga participants reap the same benefits that natural laughter brings. So release some endorphins and try yoga, which has a number of health-promoting properties!
The first hasyayoga was led by Madan Kataria’na in 1995 in India. Though initially there were few participants in the creative class, it started to become more and more popular with time. Moreover, it gained recognition from people all over the world, and the first university dedicated to laughter yoga was even established in Bangalore.
Hasyayoga – what is it?
It is a type of yoga that involves inducing laughter. This is achieved through special exercises and breathing techniques that are done in groups. The participants’ task is to make each other laugh while maintaining eye contact with a partner and performing certain movements. The classes resemble the carefree play of children, making it very easy to get rid of nagging problems. The whole concept is based on the belief that laughter, even artificially induced, triggers the same stimuli and substances in our bodies as natural laughter. It also allows us to reap the same psychological and physiological benefits.
Smile Yoga – benefits
Moments after starting a hasyayoga session, endorphins begin to be secreted and the body receives a boost of positive energy. Practitioners begin to think positively, have more motivation and desire to act. What is more, yoga provides better oxygenation of the body, improves circulation, aids concentration and strengthens immunity. Many people praise it for its positive impact on mental health and for helping to deal with depression, stress and irritability.
Yoga is also good for your appearance. It has a firming effect on the face, and the constant smiling dilates blood vessels so that nutrients can better penetrate the skin.
How to practice
You can find a group practicing smile yoga in your area or try it yourself. Start by clapping, jumping, and chanting in front of a mirror. Remember to maintain eye contact. The uncoordinated movements and chanting will help you relax, unwind, and remove internal blockages.