Laughter really could be the best medicine! Ever had a really good laugh and felt fabulous afterwards? Well, science is catching up with you. Research suggests that laughter can be great for your physical and mental wellbeing. Laughing not only helps you feel happier, but also busts stress, boosts your health, energises and allows your creativity to come shining through. Plus, laughter is a great social connector – you are 30 times more likely to laugh with other people than on your own!
BBC’s Trust Me I’m A Doctor aired a Mental Health Special on National Stress Awareness Day extolling the benefits of Laughter Clubs in stress reduction, which you may be able to access on their iPlayer here .
Aching after a great hour at Nic Walker’s Laughter Room last night.”
And the following day: “Still bubbling today!”
Kathi Walker, Laughter Room participant
Thank you so much for the session yesterday. It was a really beautiful thing to do!”
Nina Rathbone, tailor-made Hen Party session
Laughing mixes you a heady cocktail of hormones and neurotransmitters, like serotonin (the happiness chemical), endorphins (the body’s natural pain-killers), and dopamine (the reward chemical), to help you feel good. Having a good laugh will also stimulate the vagus nerve, part of your parasympathetic nervous system. Also known as the rest and digest system, it de-stresses and helps your body repair, regenerate and renew. While laughter can’t promise to cure all your ills, it can help you along the way.
Burn Calories – chuckling might burn about 20 calories an hour, whilst a thigh-slapping, all-out, can’t-control-myself bout of guffawing could use up 120. Tone your six pack – laughing activates your oblique muscles possibly better than sit-ups or stomach crunches! A hearty laugh really might protect your heart – as you laugh, you increase your pulse, your blood pressure and oxygen intake temporarily, and relax more deeply afterwards. You may improve your circulation – which could help everything from leg ulcers to cold feet! Short-term pain relief – having a laugh releases endorphins, your body’s natural pain-killers. If you have Diabetes, laughter has been found to reduce blood sugar spikes following a meal, lower inflammation (C-reactive protein) and raise good cholesterol (HDL). By stimulating the vagus nerve, laughing may even help protect you from cancer. And you could sleep better.
Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the Laughter Room last night and I actually slept like a log”
Caroline M, who’d been having trouble sleeping
Please note: Laughter, like any other aerobic exercise, is not suitable for everyone as it does cause some exertion and internal pressure, so people with pre-existing medical conditions or recent surgery should take advice from their doctor before doing a laughter session. (For example, seek medical guidance for conditions such as unregulated high blood pressure, heart problems, women in the last trimester of pregnancy or with pregnancy complications or a history of miscarriage, haemorrhoids, incontinence, and epilepsy. This is not an exhaustive list.)
Our laughter club, is not based on comedy, although there may be some, but on the physicality of laughing, letting our inner playfulness come to the fore. Some laughter will spontaneously arise from the things we do, some will come about through the infectious laughter of others, and maybe sometimes we’ll fake it until we make it, because your brain will follow your body just as well as the other way round. There will be information, exercises and tips to help you to live more joyfully.
Laughter is infectious, try it!
You are encouraged to attend with a light heart and sense of the silly, and if you don’t have those yet maybe you can find them here.
Wanted to say how kind you seemed, with a real sense of holding and tenderness for the group, it felt safe.”
Public sessions have finished now. Email me, and I’ll let you know when they return.
Check out my YouTube Channel for a laugh!
Call me now on 07989 404112 or email email@example.com and bring some laughter to your workplace and benefits to your team.
These events are for learning and entertainment purposes only. The information provided should not be used as a substitute for professional medical or psychological advice, diagnosis or treatment.