Laughing yoga is a popular movement and breathing exercise that aims to cultivate joy, bring out your inner child, and help you let go of daily life stressors. Considering that laughter is contagious, it's no surprise that laughing yoga has grown from one small group in Mumbai, India to over 5,000 clubs worldwide.
Dr. Kataria, the founder of Laugher Yoga, claims that laughing will help lift your mood, reduce stress, strengthen your immune system, increase energy levels, improve your quality of life, and help you better manage hardship. He believes that learning to laugh on cue can help you deal with stressful situations by promoting optimism and positivity. Since you cannot always rely on external influences to make you laugh, learning to laugh on your own can be a valuable tool. Laughing is known to release endorphins and "happy" hormones like dopamine and serotonin. Plus, it suppresses stress-hormones like cortisol. These effects are linked to a better mood, reduced pain, lower blood pressure, a stronger immune system, and lower stress levels and rates of depression. What's more, laughing with other people can increase social connectedness and bonding, as well as strengthen relationships. It's also linked to feelings of security and safety, allowing a person to feel more relaxed.