Wellness Centers, Spas & Retreats
⇨ Add Laughter to Your Retreat!
When bringing Laughter Yoga Workshops to wellness centers, spas and retreats, some of the areas that participants find the most substantial benefits are: stress management, lower blood pressure, increased endorphines (and feel good hormones), team building, improved productivity, decreased cortisol levels (stress hormones), increased immunity, deepened breathing and oxygenation to the body, improved social connection, positive work environment and increased employee moral, strengthened self confidence, improved health, happiness and general wellbeing.
In addition to the scientific and health benefits, participants often say that after practicing Laughter Yoga, they find themselves laughing more readily and easily throughout their day. They also report feeling an increased ability to laugh and cope with challenging events as they arise in their lives, and to approach them with a more light-hearted attitude. Evolution has given us the wonderful gift of laughter, and with LY workshops we’re able to cash in on it’s benefits whenever we feel we could use it most.
⇨ To schedule a Laughter Yoga workshop for your wellness center, spa or retreat, you may contact me using this handy form or directly at 617.529.0090 or info (at) livetolaugh (dot) org.
Laughter: The Best Medicine
“Laughter reduces pain, increases job performance, connects people emotionally, and improves the flow of oxygen to the heart and brain.”
“Laughter, it’s said, is the best medicine. And there’s lots of evidence that laughter does lots of good things for us. It reduces pain and allows us to tolerate discomfort. It reduces blood sugar levels, increasing glucose tolerance in diabetics and non-diabetics alike. It improves your job performance, especially if your work depends on creativity and solving complex problems. Its role in intimate relationships is vastly underestimated and it really is the glue of good marriages. It synchronizes the brains of speaker and listener so that they are emotionally attuned.
Laughter establishes — or restores — a positive emotional climate and a sense of connection between two people. In fact, some researchers believe that the major function of laughter is to bring people together. And all the health benefits of laughter may simply result from the social support that laughter stimulates.
Now comes hard new evidence that laughter helps your blood vessels function better. It acts on the inner lining of blood vessels, called the endothelium, causing vessels to relax and expand, increasing blood flow. In other words, it’s good for your heart and brain, two organs that require the steady flow of oxygen carried in the blood.
At this year’s meeting of the American College of Cardiology, Michael Miller, M.D., of the University of Maryland reported that in a study of 20 healthy people, provoking laughter did as much good for their arteries as aerobic activity. He doesn’t recommend that you laugh and not exercise. But he does advise that you try to laugh on a regular basis. The endothelium, he explains, regulates blood flow and adjusts the propensity of blood to coagulate and clot. In addition, it secretes assorted chemicals in response to wounds, infection or irritation. It also plays an important role in the development of cardiovascular disease.
“The endothelium is the first line in the development of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries,” said Dr. Miller. “So given the results of our study, it is conceivable that laughing may be important to maintain a healthy endothelium. And reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.” (Full article at Psychology Today)
Stress relief from laughter? Yes, no joke.” says the Mayo Clinic
“When it comes to relieving stress, more giggles and guffaws are just what the doctor ordered. Here’s why.
Whether you’re guiltily guffawing at an episode of “South Park” or quietly giggling at the latest New Yorker cartoon, laughing does you good. Laughter is a great form of stress relief, and that’s no joke.
Stress relief from laughter
A good sense of humor can’t cure all ailments, but data are mounting about the positive things laughter can do.
A good laugh has great short-term effects. When you start to laugh, it doesn’t just lighten your load mentally, it actually induces physical changes in your body. Laughter can:
Stimulate many organs. Laughter enhances your intake of oxygen-rich air, stimulates your heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins that are released by your brain.
Activate and relieve your stress response. A rollicking laugh fires up and then cools down your stress response and increases your heart rate and blood pressure. The result? A good, relaxed feeling.
Soothe tension. Laughter can also stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which help reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress.
Long-term effects. Laughter isn’t just a quick pick-me-up, though. It’s also good for you over the long haul. Laughter may:
- Improve your immune system. Negative thoughts manifest into chemical reactions that can impact your body by bringing more stress into your system and decreasing your immunity. In contrast, positive thoughts actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more-serious illnesses.
- Relieve pain. Laughter may ease pain by causing the body to produce its own natural painkillers. Laughter may also break the pain-spasm cycle common to some muscle disorders.
- Increase personal satisfaction. Laughter can also make it easier to cope with difficult situations. It also helps you connect with other people.” (Full article at the Mayo Clinic)
Approaches to Creativity and Discovery
“Should we take creativity seriously at a time of global financial and environmental crises? Not if we want to find solutions, argues Professor Julian Evans (UCL Chemistry).
In an article based on the Presidential Lecture to the Chemical and Physical Society first published in Sophia, he proposes that there is an intimate connection between laughter and creativity. Is he serious?” (Full article via UCL)
The Effect of Mirthful Laughter on Stress and Natural Killer Cell (NKT) Activity
CONTEXT: A recent survey of rural Midwestern cancer patients revealed that humor was one of the most frequently used complementary therapies. Psychoneuroimmunology research suggests that, in addition to its established psychological benefits, humor may have physiological effects on immune functioning.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the effect of laughter on self-reported stress and natural killer cell activity.DESIGN:Randomized, pre-post test with comparison group.
SETTING: Indiana State University Sycamore Nursing Center, which is a nurse-managed community health clinic in a mid-sized, Midwestern city.
PARTICIPANTS: 33 healthy adult women.
INTERVENTION: Experimental subjects viewed a humorous video while subjects in the distraction control group viewed a tourism video.
RESULTS: Stress decreased for subjects in the humor group, compared with those in the distraction group (U32 = 215.5; P = .004). Amount of mirthful laughter correlated with postintervention stress measures for persons in the humor group (r16 = -.655; P = .004). Subjects who scored greater than 25 on the humor response scale had increased immune function postintervention (t16 = 2.52 P = .037) and compared with the remaining participants (t32 = 32.1; P = .04). Humor response scale scores correlated with changes in NK cell activity (r16 = .744; P = 001).
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Self-reported stress and arousal (Stress Arousal Check List), mirthful laughter (Humor Response Scale), and immune function (chromium release natural killer [NK] cell cytotoxicity assay).
CONCLUSION: Laughter may reduce stress and improve NK cell activity. As low NK cell activity is linked to decreased disease resistance and increased morbidity in persons with cancer and HIV disease, laughter may be a useful cognitive-behavioral intervention.” (Article via U.S. National Library of Medicine)
Making Work Fun
By Paul E. McGhee, Ph.D.
“A funny thing is happening in American companies these days. From very small companies to Fortune 500 corporations, businesses are learning to put fun to work. The word is out that employees who enjoy their jobs work more effectively and are more productive, and companies are reexamining a long-held assumption that has formed the core of the American work ethic. That assumption is that work and play don’t mix.” (Full article here)
⇨ To explore the benefits of Laughter Yoga further, please feel free to check out our Interesting Articles, Videos and Benefits pages. I look forward to helping you bring more laughter into your life soon! Drop me a line to book a workshop anytime.