Laughter yoga

Laughter yoga

Laughter yoga is a technique which has been designed byDr. Madan Kataria, a pysician in Bombay, in 1995. He got the idea through anarticle he was asked to write for a magazine. He was to write about the health benefits of laughter. This intrigued him so much, that he started to try it out with a group of people he would meet in the parc every morning before work.

The technique is since grown into a joyful exercise regimen. We aim to make contact with our childlike playfulness through short laughter exercises, intermingled with breathing exercises (pranayama). This creates a dynamic process with many physical and mental benefits. We laugh in a group, while making as much eye contact as possible. Humour is not necessary.

Dokter Kataria’s wish is to make the world a better place by making as much people connect with laughter.  Honestly, how long have you managed to remain angry when you are made to laugh?

The body does not know the difference
When we laugh (even if we just smile), our brains produce hormones which make us feel happy: endorphins, serotonin and dopamine. And now the interesting news: our body cannot distinguish the difference between reallaughter and faking it. As soon as you lift the corners of your mouth, the hormones are being produced, whether you feel happy or not. Is that not amazing?
In some countries this has led to patients with depressive disorders being treated succesfully with laughter therapy.

So you can fake your body by pretending. We just start with the laughter exercises and the real laughter usually follows quite quickly. But even if that does not happen, you will still enjoy the health benefits of the laughter.

Laughter and  health

Through laughter, our diapragm moves up and down, bringing large quantities of oxygen in your body. Also, your internal organs are massaged, resulting in a better cirulation in your internal organs and an improvement of the lymphe circulation. Your heart at the same time gets a good work-out, so your cardiovascular fitness increses without having to do much for it.

Did you know that:

  • you get less wrinkles through laughter
  • 1 minute of hearty laughter is the physical equivalent of 10 minutes on the rowing machine or jogging.
  • 20 minutes of hearty laughter equates to a full body work-out?
  • laughter reduces stress and enhances the immune system.
  • laughter enhances our childlike playful behaviour and this in turn creates a greater emotional intelligence.
  • laughter slows down the aging process.
  • eand so much more….

The Chinese already long knew of these benefits, which is why they say that every smile prolongs life with one minute.

Laughter yoga is growing fast in the world. There are now more than 6000 laughter clubs in over 60 countries. To learn more about laughter yoga, please visit Dr. Kataria’s website:

Laughter workshops

Planned laughter workshops can be found in my agenda. I
s it also possible to arrange for a private workshop for special occasions: hen parties, business outings, parties, etc. I am happy to discuss the options with you.
I have given succesful workshops for big businesses such as Nutricia and the Universitery Hospital of Utrecht. Teams report the workshops as being opening, connecting and stress reducing. Teams work together more easily after the workshop and people are more motivated about their work.

Please contact me for further information.

There are many oportunities to laugh in The Netherlands. Please visit or for more information.

You can also join a laughterclub on Skype. Just connect via skype with “laughterclub”.



“As a hyper-busy clinical operations team with a real need for a focus on good vibes, we invited Nadia to join us in a team meeting and lead us in a laughter yoga session followed by a breathing session. Nadja did not disappoint, and the team thoroughly enjoyed her workshop! As a result, the team was triggered to regularly take a step back, breathe and refocus their energies. Nadja also recommended a few useful apps to help facilitate this. Many thanks, Nadja!” – Loraine Parker, Project Manager Julius Center UMCU

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