Giggling makes you live longer

Jacob Bevelacqua laughs while looking into Jayson Wagner’s eyes on April 27.

Somebody who was unaware of what was going on might have thought the hyenas from The Lion King had relocated to the multi-purpose room at Western Washington University. Or maybe they thought there was an extra hilarious comedian who didn’t even have to talk to get his or her audience to laugh.

Peals of laughter poured from the doors of the building. Inside, people were frolicking with flailing limbs and grins plastered across their faces. The chuckles bouncing around the room ranged from high pitched squeals to hearty bellows.

On April 27, WWU’s Meditation Club gathered to giggle. Anna Baker led the group in a laughter meditation/laughter yoga, which is a fairly new movement started by Dr. Kataria in India. He found that laughter helps people live longer and improves moral.

Baker learned about laughter yoga from a friend four years ago and has since led several laughter meditations. During the meditation she guides people through a series of silly activities they do while laughing. The trick is the laughter can be fake! It turns out the physical benefits from laughter can be achieved through both genuine and contrived laughter! Generally people are infected with amusement and begin laughing authentically within minutes.

“It’s physically demanding,” Baker said. “But it works at clearing the mind.”

Tomorrow is World Laughter Day, which comes every year on the first Sunday in May. Giggle with your buddies, guffaw with your family and chuckle to yourself to contribute to the positive experience that will be shared across the globe on that day.

Chelsea Van Dyke pretends to walk on the sun, her imaginary cries of pain turning into a smile.

The group lays on each other’s bellies to feel the vibrations from their laughs, sending them into fits of giggles.

The “caterpillar” formation is created by laying on each other’s bellies until everyone can feel someone else laughing.

Lydia Love and Alex Gardipe share a glance in the midst of their laughter.

Heads quiver as people burst into laughter.

Jacob de Guzman and Tara Stanley laugh with partners.

Isabella Reis-Newsom laughs while making eye contact with a partner.

During the end of the meditation, where participants only laugh if it is genuine, Danny Ray becomes consumed with laughter.

The group stands in a circle, connected by pinkies, to laugh in unison.


5 thoughts on “Giggling makes you live longer

  1. Megan

    so awesome brooke! i want in!! i love the third image you have, the shallow depth of field on the train of people laying on each others’ bellies!

  2. Bodie

    Brooke! These are beautiful! What amazing shots, I can’t believe the genuine overflowing joy you captured here!

    Much Love,
    Bodie πŸ™‚


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