LAUGHTER YOGA: FINDING ONE’S HAPPINESS

Posted by Javan Poblador | Posted on September 21, 2019

“When you laugh; you change and when you change, the world changes around you” – Dr. Madan Kataria

Humanist Alliance Philippines, International (HAPI) launched its new fundraising event, “HAPI Laughter Yoga Class” last August 18, 2019, at the Rotary Center, Quezon City. Laughter yoga originated in Mumbai, India in 1995 and was the brainchild of Dr. Madan Kataria who focused some of his scholarly works on the benefits of laughter.

Kates Ante requested some participants to communicate alternately to one another using gibberish language which elicited laughter among participants.

Laughter is known to be beneficial to one’s health. In a 2017 study published by Journal of Dental and Medical Research, laughter can bring blood pressure down, and in another study in 2014 published in International Journal of Obesity, laughter can be a good form of exercise as it can actually burn calories. Moreover, hearty laughter is surely a good abs workout.

In addition, laughter triggers the release of endorphins, a hormone that activates the body’s opiate receptors, causing an analgesic effect. In the 14th century, Henri de Mondeville, a French surgeon, used laughter to distract patients from the pain of surgery and to help them during recovery. Aside from endorphins, laughter can also stimulate the release of other hormones, like dopamine, serotonin, and oxytocin, which contributes to one’s well-being and happiness, while decreasing the levels of stress hormones. Thus, laughter reduces stress, anxiety and boosts one’s immune system at the same time.

To formally introduce laughter yoga to participants, which is relatively new in the Philippines, a brief history of the said activity was discussed including its origin, and how laughter was developed as a form of exercise. Initially, the participants were asked to introduce themselves accompanied by a signature laugh in order to prepare and set everyone’s mood.

Kates Ante, a certified yoga laughter teacher, facilitates the class for a series of laughter simulation.

After which, certain house rules were established in order to successfully accomplish its main objective – to laugh our heart out. According to Dr. Kataria, the body can’t actually differentiate between a pretend and genuine laughter. Hence, after establishing house rules, it was followed by series of laughter exercises by imitating different forms of laughter through role-play activities, and as a medium to interact with one another – a language that transcends boundaries.

In spite of imitating laughter, a peal of genuine and contagious laughter naturally came out from the participants during the duration of the activity. Laughter yoga doesn’t also require much mental concentration and body coordination, as compared to the traditional form of Yoga. However, laughter yoga incorporates breathing exercises in between laughter exercises.

Participants were asked to calm down and meditate in their most comfortable position after a series of laughter exercises.

Humanist Alliance Philippines, International (HAPI) is deeply anchored in its commitment to ameliorate human condition. More than the health benefits, HAPI laughter yoga class aims to connect individuals by breaking one’s respective walls and boundaries in order to establish a different human connection and experience through laughter. It is through laughter that we can imbue positivity towards a relevant social integration and improve mental health wellness.

HAPI Laughter Yoga class was attended mostly by members of HAPI Metro Manila Chapter and facilitated by Kates Ante, a mental health advocate and a laughter yoga teacher, who acquired her certification in India. Proceeds of the said activity will be used to fund various HAPI programs and projects across the country.

How to be happy after a laughter yoga?

 

Other good reads...

HAPI kids visit the National Museum of Natural History

HAPI kids visit the National Museum of Natural History

Officially opening to the public in May of 2018, the National Museum of Natural History in Manila has since seen long lines at its gates. Housing five stories of curated galleries of preserved fauna and flora are the old building and courtyard of the Department of Finance. Metro Manila Chapter of Humanist Alliance Philippines, International […]

HAPI brings joy to kids following barangay elections

HAPI brings joy to kids following barangay elections

Street clean-ups, celebrations and press releases usually follow election days in the Philippines. Felix Tapao, a Romblomanon Punong Barangay (Village Chief) candidate, had another idea to thank his community for their support at the recent Barangay (Village) nationwide elections. On May 15, 2018, his daughter, Jean Karla Tapao of Humanist Alliance Philippines, International (HAPI), organized […]

Volunteerism: Behind the Curtains

“An hour more,” I repeatedly murmured to myself. 90? 100? I counted again. 120 people managed to show up here. We were almost in disbelief! We have never initiated an event with a crowd as huge as this and it was never this ambitious. But the audacity to run through with this ambitious project is […]

I am for Civil Union

I have always advocated for civil union of the same sex because it is the right of every individual to enter into a contract. Controversy aside, let us focus on the human relationship, and not on their unacceptable social norms as others perceived it to be. Sexual orientation and gender identity has nothing to do […]

MIDTERM ELECTIONS 2019 – MY HAPI PERCEPTION

My HAPI perception on this Midterm elections 2019 in the Philippines. I was  informed that CNN took interest for a HAPI representative to discuss women’s vote certainly took some time. CNN researcher called me twice and had us waiting for a couple of weeks. I didn’t know that before you can be included in the […]

HAPI’s Executive Director interviewed by Conatus News

Written by: Christopher M.V. Barredo Last December 12th, 2016, Ms. Jennifer Gutierrez, Executive Director of the Humanist Alliance Philippines, International (HAPI) was interviewed by Scott Douglas Jacobsen of Conatus News, an online blogging platform started by grassroots activists giving progressive voices centre stage on issues ranging from current affairs, science, politics, education to philosophy and religion. Scott is the founder of In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing The interview spreads awareness […]

Humanist Voices interviews HAPI Vice-Chairperson

Humanist Voices interviews HAPI Vice-Chairperson

Humanist Voices is the official publication of International Humanist Ethical Youth Organization (IHEYO), bringing news and opinion from Humanists around the world. IHEYO is the youth section and non-profit umbrella of International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) to which Humanist Alliance Philippines, International (HAPI) has been a member organization since 2015. It serves as the […]

About The Author

Kleine Agbayani

Kleine “Kleng” Agbayani  is an accountant during the day, a dreamer at night, and bisexual both day and night. He is an aspiring mountaineer and a beach lover who doesn’t know how to swim. He also loves sunset as he loves poetry. Currently, he is the HAPI Internal Auditor and in concurrent capacity as Metro Manila Assistant Lead Convenor.

Scroll to Top