Elsie Blum-a resident of Great Neck, Long Island, USA just wants to make people laugh - even at age 94! Every week, she conducts Laughter Yoga sessions to get people to laugh and better their mood and health. She has been doing Laughter Yoga for about 15 years and says that it takes fewer muscles to smile than to frown. When you laugh, you feel good and the brain responds to laughter and you feel relaxed all over.
Blum came across Laughter Yoga a number of years ago after her husband died. She said she heard something about it on television and thought what is there to lose? It helped me in my everyday life, she said. You can get up in the morning and say this is my day and I can make it what I want.
Highly inspired by the concept of laughing for no reason, she trained to become a laughter teacher after which she started conducting her own laughter sessions. When asked about still working at 94, she simply asked Do I look 94?
Besides her weekly free sessions, she works with dementia patients. The physical contact and eye contact not only makes them laugh, but helps them feel better. She even works with hospital nurses as well because she feels that if she can get the nurses in a good mood, they will be more likely to bring a smile to the face of one of their patients. If theyre feeling good, theyll come to their patients with a smile on their face, she said.
With a background in social work and psychology, Blum said the most important aspect - whether it is psychology or yoga - is to know yourself. And Laughter Yoga helps in doing just so. She also says that because of Laughter Yoga, she finds it very easy to walk around and smile all day.