Cindy Miles, CLYT, USA:Laughter Yoga has opened so many doors for me; I have presented to groups as small as a dozen and as large as 800. I presented Laughter Yoga at an eight-state regional Aging conference (Southeast Association of Area Agencies on Aging), and at Mobile, AL to facilitate a Laughter Club session with 250 family caregivers on one day, and then the four-hour Laughter Yoga retreat, which was featured on the news video on Facebook.
Since returning from my Certified Laughter Yoga Teacher training in Orlando last April, I've been working to spread Laughter Yoga throughout the continuum of aging services providers in my own state of North Carolina. We have also launched a pilot project using the How Do You Feel form and adding pre- and post- blood pressure, pulse rate, and blood oxygenation measurements. The data we're getting back shows compelling evidence that Laughter Yoga is, indeed, a powerful intervention.
While all of this was happening, I have also been working to ensure the sustainability of Laughter Yoga in the field of aging services over the long term. I believe that Laughter Yoga is so powerful it needs to be offered in every senior center, every long term care facility, frankly, anywhere senior citizens gather.
On a personal level, I am continually delighted with the outcomes when I share Laughter Yoga. I feel Laughter Yoga is an amazing gift that has been given to me, and it keeps on giving and giving and giving. My friendships have become deeper; several friends have become my personal cheering squad. LY has also become a valuable tool for nurturing my friendships. I have one friend in particular who is coming to me for one-on-one Laughter Yoga coaching to help her through some difficult family relationships.
Laughter Yoga has also become an important element of my personal spiritual path. Many of the things Dr. Madan Kataria taught us in class and writes about in his books have become guideposts for me, challenging me to continually examine my perceptions and intentions.
Laughter Yoga is also helping me to manage chronic depression in a way that pharmaceuticals were never able to. Not only do the exercises produce positive physiological changes, the mental stimulation I am getting from my work to expand Laughter Yoga in my state also helps me stay motivated to keep moving forward.