What happens in a laughter yoga class?

What happens in a laughter yoga class? Jun 23, 2020

What happens in a laughter yoga class?

You probably have a good idea of what happens in a yoga class.

But what about a laughter yoga class?

This blend of old and new is sweeping across Queensland, with laughter yoga clubs popping up everywhere from Coolangatta to Brisbane.

Laughter yoga works by combining guided breathing exercises (pranayama) with laughter exercises. Together this helps you decrease stress and increase mood. From a stronger immune system to better heart health, a laughter yoga class is like a visit to the doctor and gym all rolled into one.

If you’re looking to enjoy the outrageous health benefits of laugh yoga, here’s what to expect from a typical class.

How to do laughter yoga

Step One: warm-up exercises

You wouldn’t go out for a run without stretching, so you can’t get ready for laugh yoga without warming up the lungs!

These warm-up exercises will prepare your body for laughter and make sure you get the full health benefits on offer. Here are a couple of common laughing yoga exercises to look forward to.

1 – Gibberish exercises – Gibberish is a language without meaning. That means you’re already fluent – congratulations!

You don’t have to make sense with this warm-up exercise, just make noise. Speaking in gibberish will help reduce any inhibitions and shyness you have. And as everyone in the class is in the same boat you’ll quickly feel comfortable and at ease.

2 -Clapping Exercises – Clapping hands helps to stimulate the acupressure points and get your energy levels up.

Clapping exercises involve full finger-to-finger and palm-to-palm contact so prepare to be high-fiving your way to good health.

Clapping exercises are typically performed in a rhythmic pattern. Think ‘HO-HO-HA-HA-HA’. These sounds simulate the movement of your diaphragm (which you’ll be focusing on next).

Opening up your breathing is more than maximising laughter. It’s about getting enough air in, stimulating feel-good chemicals, and kickstarting your body’s own ability to make you feel amazing.

Step Two: Deep-breathing exercises

The goal here is to get your diaphragm moving. This will help flush your lungs, oxygenate your blood and create a sense of calm relaxation.

One of the key features of yoga is that exhalation must be longer than inhalation. That means pushing more air out than you bring in.

The reason for this is to activate the calming branch of your autonomic nervous system, known as the parasympathetic nervous system.

And guess what happens to be one of the easiest (and most enjoyable) ways to exhale for longer?


Step Three: Laughter exercises

Laughter exercises are typically playful (it’s tough to have a serious laughing exercise!) and may involve roleplay to help you get fully immersed in the experience.

There are 3 common types of laughter exercises for you to enjoy.

1 – Playful Exercises –

These are designed to melt away shyness and leave you roaring with laughter. You can expect to engage in method-acting techniques (next stop Hollywood) to shift your mindset and open you up to wellness.

Playful exercises may include Milkshake Laughter, Mobile Phone Laughter and Animal Laughter.

Not sure what these are? You’ll have to come along to a yoga laughter class and find out!

2 – Value-Based Laughter Exercises –

These exercises are created to attach positive feelings to experiences in your life. The goal is not just to feel energised and refreshed in the moment, but to change the way you react in your everyday life.

Imagine being able to laugh when something goes wrong and feel stronger, happier and healthier. That’s 100% possible!

Value-based laughter exercises may include Appreciation Laughter, No Money Laughter and Forgiveness Laughter.

3 – Physical Laughter Exercises –

Are you feeling a little stiff and sore? Physical laughter exercises help get your body moving and the blood pumping.

You won’t end up drenched in sweat. But you will enjoy a relaxing stretch that helps dissolve neck stiffness, frozen shoulder and much more.

Expect eye contact, group dynamics and a whole lot of laughs (that shouldn’t come as a surprise by now!).

Step Four: Grounding exercises

Now it’s time to cool down and unwind. For many people, this is the most enjoyable part of laughter yoga.

With your energy levels high, your blood pumping and your heart beating, it’s time to ground your laughter and stabilise your body.

Your laughter yoga instructor will guide you through calming and peaceful relaxation, bringing awareness to each part of your body as you enjoy the moment and take all the lasting benefits with you out the door.

Grounding Exercise Laughing Yoga

It’s fun, fully inclusive and a fantastic health boost.

The only downside?

You have to wait until the next class starts to do it all over again!

Wondering how much a laughter yoga class costs? Click here to explore our class rates and timetable