Laughter Yoga started in 1995 in a Mumbai park in India, when a medical doctor – Dr Madan Kataria became interested in the power of laughter in curing illness. It started with just 5 willing participants but there are now over 1000 laughter clubs across the world. http://laughteryoga.org
Evidence has shown, that making yourself laugh provides the same physiological and psychological benefits as real laughter because “the mind does not know we’re faking it.” Laughter yoga sessions generally start with gentle warm-up techniques which include stretching, chanting, clapping, eye contact and subtle body movement to break down inhibitions and encourage childlike playfulness – something we adults don’t have enough of in my professional view. Breathing exercises are also used to prepare the lungs for laughter,
Laughing is brilliant way to strengthen our immune system, completely reverse the symptoms of depression & anxiety alongside many other health benefits. How does this happen? By bringing more oxygen to the body and brain, which in turn, enhances positive feelings and improves interpersonal skills. Just 15 minutes a day of real belly laughter is proven to be the equivalent of 100 sit ups in the gym – it’s perfectly natural, has exactly the
Mental health problems affect about 1 in 10 children and young people. They include depression, anxiety and conduct disorder, and are often a direct response to what is happening in their lives.
Alarmingly, however, 70% of children and young people who experience a mental health problem have not had appropriate interventions at a sufficiently early age.
Just stop for a minute to consider the above research by a professional mental health body in relation to 21st Century children – our children.
Fortunately or unfortunately as the case may be, my generation is one in which children went out to play in the morning and came back in the evening, too exhausted to think about being depressed. Don’t misunderstand me, my family were poor working class with my clothes always second-hand & discipline dished out where necessary. But in terms of mental health, it wasn’t even an issue growing up and I certainly don’t recall any of my childhood friends having mental health problems, the way children do now. So I find myself asking ‘what’s wrong with the world today?’ Could it be the advanced levels of technology we now have? where virtual friends are many and real face-to-face conversations practically non-existent? Or could it be, because children no longer need to use their mind to do anything? Let’s face it, with online spellchecking & auto correcting, online calculators