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Development of Holistic Teaching Project: Laughter Yoga

Info: 1315 words (5 pages) Nursing Assignment
Published: 22nd May 2020

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Tagged: exerciseteaching

Laughter Yoga: Holistic Teaching Project

 Have you ever heard “laughter is the best medicine”?  How do you feel after laughing?  Happy? Carefree?  Laughing always makes me feel good.  It can be said that laughing is good for your body, soul, and it releases stress.  Laughter has many healthy benefits such as increasing blood flow, boosts mood, strengthens your immune system, and releases endorphins; our bodies feel-good chemicals.  In response to laughter, catecholamine levels increase; mental functions improve; and skeletal muscles “massage” the internal organs, improving their blood supply (Lynes, Kawar, & Valdez, 2019).

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 Many nurses have high levels of stress because of their work environment can be very fast paced, understaffed, and stressful.  The nurses stress can be caused by years and years of stressful patient care, shortage of nurses, and no outlets to relieve stress.  We as nurses are always caring for the patients first and foremost, which leaves self-care last.  If a nurse is unable to relieve her stress, it can be damaging to her health both physically and mentally.  Years of stressful work can lead to health problems, work burnout, and possibly inadequate patient care.  Nurses need to find ways to cope with stress to avoid these damaging problems.  Some ways to relieve stress would be through exercising regularly, therapy groups, retreats, and creative outlet projects.  Many employers now offer wellness programs to their employees as part of the benefit packages offered to employees.  Employers are recognizing that healthy, happy, stress free employees are worth keeping.  We have several wellness classes offered on-site at my current place of employment and they are free to the employees.  Healthy, happy employees equal happy, healthy, and satisfied patients.

 My holistic project is on Laughter Yoga.  Laughter Yoga began in 1999 by Dr. Madan Kataria in India.  He believed that laughter benefited our bodies health regardless if it was natural or unnatural laughter.  Our bodies could not distinguish the difference.  Many have done research on the effects of laughter and the benefits one gets from laughing.  After obtaining my information on Laughter Yoga, I will be leading a group of my nursing coworkers through a Laughter Yoga session.  My hope is to help my coworkers relieve some stress, feel better, and strengthen our bond by this group activity.

Assessment of learning needs

 I will give each participant a short questionnaire to answer prior to beginning the teaching session.  This questionnaire will also include post evaluation questions that they will be able to complete once the learning session is done.  The pre-questionnaire will address their prior knowledge of Laughter yoga, any special learning needs, cultural considerations, preferred learning style, current health status, and their readiness to participate.  The post evaluation questions will have them rate the effectiveness of the class, what would they like to see next time, and what improvements could the teacher do to improve their experience.   There will also be an area that they can make any additional comments.

Teaching project

 I will be teaching a group of three to six of my coworkers in Laughter Yoga.  After everyone completes the pre-questionnaire, I will have them form a circle.  Having them in a circle will allow everyone to see each other and feel as part of the group.  First, I will explain the three phases of Laughter Yoga: clapping, deep breathing, and laughter.  Clapping involves clapping with the hands flat, this activates the acupressure points in the hands.  The deep breathing is taking a deep breath from the belly to fill the diaphragm.  They will breathe in through their nose and exhale out the mouth.  The exhalations will be longer than the inhalations.  The last phase is laughter and I will show them an example of what we will be doing.

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 I will start off with instructing them on breathing exercises to get their blood flowing and warm up their muscles.  This will last approximately five minutes.  Once the warmup is complete, we will begin the clapping phase.  The clapping phase is a chant that goes like this: ho, ho…. ha, ha, ha.  So, the clapping is two claps together, then three claps together and we will do three sets of this.  This chant will be used throughout the teaching, usually after a laughter session.  Another chant we will be using is called child’s play, which goes like this: Very good, very good, yay(giving thumbs up); very good, very good, yay(thumbs pointing to self); very good, very good, yay( with arms up above the head).  This will be done in sets of two.  I will demonstrate modification of this if there are any participants who cannot raise their arms above their head.  Once the clapping phase is done, we will do 6 deep breathing episodes.  Next, we will begin our laughter session.  This session will last approximately 20 minutes in total.  In between each session, we will use either the clapping chant or the child’s play. 

 The laughter session will start with:

  1. Shaking hands – shaking hands with their neighbor while laughing and keeping eye contact.
  2. Child’s play – very good, very good, yay! For three sets.
  3. Sumo laughter – like a sumo wrestler position. Stomp one foot then the other then raise the arms up while laughing.
  4. Child’s play – very good, very good, yay! For three sets.
  5. Umbrella – one person holds the imaginary umbrella open and everyone else crowds around trying to get underneath it to get out of the rain while laughing the whole time.
  6. Child’s play – very good, very good, yay! For three sets.
  7. Milkshake – each hand has an imaginary cup in it.  You pour from one cup to the other, then drink it while laughing.
  8. Child’s play – very good, very good, yay! For three sets.
  9. Flossing – act like your flossing your teeth but bigger using their arms and head.
  10. Child’s play – very good, very good, yay! For three sets.
  11. Argument – pointing finger at each other like your arguing, laughing the whole time.
  12. Child’s play – very good, very good, yay! For three sets.
  13. Namaste – hands together like praying, maintain eye contact with each other.

I will end this session with the clapping chant for a set of three.  To finish the Laughter Yoga, I will end with some deep breathing exercises in a soft, soothing voice while their eyes are closed.

Once complete, each participant will be encouraged to complete the post evaluation questionnaire and hand it in to me once they are completed.


  • Lynes, L., Kawar, L., & Valdez, R. (2019). Can laughter yoga provide stress relief for clinical nurses? Nursing Management, 31-37.
  • Weinberg, M.K., Hammond, T., & Cummins, R. (2014). The impact of laughter yoga on subjective well-being: A pilot study. European Journal of Humour Research, 1, 4, 25-34.
  • Woodbury-Farina, M.A., Schwabe, M. (2015). Laughter yoga: benefits of mixing laughter and yoga. Yoga & Physical Therapy, 5, 209. doi: 10.4172/2157-7595.1000209
  • Yazdani, M., Esmaeilzadeh, M., Pahlavanzadeh, S., & Khaledi, F. (2014). The effect of laughter yoga on general health among nursing students. Iranian Journal of Nursing and Midwifery Research, 19, 1, 36-40.


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