My Laughter Yoga Story

Sukumar Satpathy

Rachel Ades, Switzerland: My Laughter Yoga story begins a little bit different. It was one weekend when my son and his wife and kids came over to see us. As we chatted, my daughter in law told me about an article she read on Laughter Yoga. I thought that was exactly what I was looking for without knowing what I was looking for!

The next day, I opened my laptop and typed first in German: “Lachyoga” then Laughter Yoga. As I browsed through the various courses and trainings offered in Laughter Yoga, I came across the name Dr. Madan Kataria as being the founder of this unusual concept. I thought maybe I could learn from him and I was fortunate that his next training was in Interlaken, just an hour away from my place.

My next problem was how to sell this plan to my husband. There again Dr. Kataria helped me without really knowing he did. I showed my husband Dr. K’s latest video on You Tube where he is laughing in silence . He found it very funny and after a little explanation he was convinced that it worked and asked me to go for the training.

I didn’t sleep the night before because I did not know what was waiting for me. Being in a group with so many strange people seemed frightening. But, what can I tell you – barely half a day later, I felt like embracing. everyone of them . How can this happen, and so fast. Well Laughter Yoga is not just a healthy exercise for the body and mind; it helps you connect with people and alleviates your shyness. Laughter helps you forget all the differences that usually separate people from each other.

The experience at the training was life changing. Though I had faced many hardships in life, and had lost the ability to be completely happy from inside, here I was – hopping around like a little girl, embracing the world, sleeping like a baby and breathing easily without my asthma spray. Laughing and being playful which was hidden away deep inside of me had surfaced once again. I just started to love everybody.

It was like when you see a good comedy, you feel so energized and happy that you forget about your anger, problems – in fact, you even smile at complete strangers. Can you imagine feeling like this all the time? With Laughter Yoga I learned to do it in real life and not just for a few hours, but right through the day. And the best thing is that I can now give this gift to others as well. This is a dream come true. I can help people for free, and if I want I can also make a living from it. But believe me, after a days work of Laughter Yoga, I should be paying my customers as I myself will get so much joy out of it!

With laughter, your emotions feel like a roller coaster, and often you end up crying which helps to get rid of all pent up feelings and emotions. For me, this catharsis happened only when I found myself in the privacy of my home. It all came pouring out and I felt so light and free. It was really marvelous.