World Laughter Day: Practice laughter yoga for these 5 health benefits

On the day of World Laughter Day, we are revealing how practicing laughter yoga can improve your overall health.
laughter yoga
Practice laughter yoga daily to manage your stress levels. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Aayushi Gupta Updated: 8 May 2023, 11:48 am IST
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If you feel stressed, anxious, or overwhelmed, and want a quick way to boost your mood, turn to laughter yoga. Every year on World Laughter Day, founded by  Dr Madan Kataria who launched Laughter Yoga movement, aims to create awareness about the importance of laughter and the benefits of staying happy. Well, you may not realize it, but your emotions play a huge role in your overall health. Considering laughter is touted as the best medicine, laughter yoga is a natural tool that can relieve stress and re-establish calm. Read on to learn more about it.

Health Shots spoke to Himalayan Siddhaa Akshar, Founder of Akshar Yoga Research and Development Centre, to understand the benefits of laughter yoga.

What is laughter yoga?

Laughter yoga, also known as hasya yoga, is a kind of exercise that involves voluntary laughter. This type of yoga is based on the belief that voluntary laughter has similar physiological and psychological advantages to spontaneous laughter. Usually done in groups, it involves lots of eye contact and lighthearted interaction among participants. This intentional laughter often turns into real and contagious laughter, making you feel relaxed and happy.

laughter yoga
Laughing has a positive effect on your health. Image Courtesy: Freepik

Laughter yoga is now practiced by many people all over the world. Let’s explore how its health benefits.

Also read: Do you ever laugh or cry involuntarily? Pseudobulbar Affect could be at play

Health benefits of laughter yoga

Laughter yoga is popularly practiced by people, especially in groups across studios, parks, and gardens by individuals. There is no age restriction for performing laughter yoga. Due to its beneficial effects on both physical and mental health, it is gaining recognition as an important aspect of yoga. Here are its health benefits:

1. Reducing stress: This unique exercise has a number of health advantages, including lowering levels of stress hormones like cortisol and epinephrine (adrenaline), reducing discomfort, burning calories, and stimulating organs. Its primary goal is to foster health and happiness, promoting overall well-being.

2. Manage blood pressure: Practicing laughter yoga is one way to improve your heart health. The American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine cites studies that found that laughter therapy had varying physiological effects on aspects such as blood pressure (BP), life satisfaction, reduced anxiety, and more. Hence, if you’re a BP patient, practice laughter yoga daily.

3. Improves mental health: According to Akshar, “Laughter yoga serves as a preventative step against mental health concerns including depression, stress, and anxiety while also encouraging a sense of enjoyment and curiosity. It helps to release endorphins (happy hormones), build confidence, and promote an easygoing attitude.”

laughter yoga
Laugh it off, baby! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

4. Boost immune system: The ability to fight off illness, bacteria, and viruses is improved when you practice laughter yoga because it reduces stress hormones and boosts immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies.


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5. Manage pain: When you practice laughter yoga, your body naturally produces endorphins, or happy hormones, which are our body’s natural painkillers. Additionally, it is a fantastic way to divert your attention from discomfort and stress.

Laughter yoga has been demonstrated to have a relaxing effect on the nervous system, resulting in feelings of relaxation in addition to bringing joy into our lives. Laughter yoga also strengthens the muscles of the face.

How to practice laughter yoga?

1. To start, stand up straight with your feet shoulder-width apart.
2. Take a deep breath as you raise your arms above your head.
3. Bring your arms down to your sides and laugh heartily as you exhale.
4. Repeat this exercise five times to warm up your body and get into the spirit of laughter yoga.

You may not realize it, but laughter yoga has so much to offer you. Practice it on a daily basis and see the results!

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About the Author

Aayushi Gupta is a health writer with a special interest in trends related to diet, fitness, beauty and intimate health. With around 2 years of experience in the wellness industry, she is connected to leading experts and doctors to provide our readers with factually correct information. ...Read More

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