Research suggests that laughter is a powerful form of healing. Try it for yourself with these 10 simple laughter yoga exercises!
Laughing de-stresses you, improves your mood, and keeps you healthy and energised. The best thing of all? You can do it anytime, anywhere. We’ve talked about the science-backed benefits of laughter yoga in an earlier article, but we know it’s not so easy to dive right into something new when you don’t know how.
To get you started, we got in touch with certified laughter yoga trainer Kitti Chang for some simple exercises you can do at home! The first rule about laughter yoga is not to take yourself so seriously. Some of these exercises might seem hilarious (that’s the whole point!), and you might be shy to do them, but take a deep breath, relax, and let the chuckles out. There’s no better medicine than laughter and happiness. Your body and mind will thank you for it later on.
1. While doing house work: sweeping / vacuuming laughter
Just simply sweep or vacuum 2 strokes and go hoho, then another 2 strokes you go haha. Repeat until you finish. If you burst out into real laughter, allow yourself to enjoy the fun.
2. Argument laughter
Wag your index finger around, laughing as if you were arguing.
3. Credit card bill laughter
Look at your credit card bill and pretend to be shocked with the unexpectedly high amount, look at it for a moment and then laugh hysterically. Show other people your family around your bill and laugh at each other’s bill.
4. Cheek pinching laughter
Go around laughing while pinching one another’s cheeks – on your faces, I didn’t mean the other cheeks!
5. Chicken laughter
Impersonate chickens, flapping your wings and go around laughing.
6. Ice cube laughter
Pretend you are putting ice cubes down one another’s back and laugh. Be playful, laugh and shriek.
7. Laugh at yourself
Point to yourself and walk around laughing at yourself. This is a great exercise for humility.
8. Laughter cream
Rub your moisturizer or any other beauty cream on your face and body and laugh.
9. Laughter jacks
Do jumping jacks and laugh with each bounce.
10. Pain laughter
Pretend to find pains around your body. Hold each spot, moan, makes faces and say ‘ow’ then let it turn into laughter. This exercise is great especially if you are in real pain, as laughter helps releases endorphins which also acts as a natural pain killer.
Expert tip: Remember to deeply inhale all the way to your belly after every 3 exercises before continuing. How do you know if you are breathing deeply? Put both your hands at your lower abdomen. When you inhale, you’ll feel that your lower abdomen is rising. Hold it for 5 counts then exhale naturally.
Still don’t know how to go about it? Join in on FREE sessions of laughter yoga at Malaysia’s celebration of World Laughter Day, happening at Publika, Solaris Dutamas on May 4th, 2014. There’ll be comedians, musicians, clowns, and laughter exercises to ensure you get a good laugh. You’ll also get to meet Certified Laughter Yoga Trainers Kitti Chang and Chandana Denz, as well as celebrity hosts Phng Li Kim and Dennis Lau.
Did you try any of these exercises? How did they feel? Let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook page!