A class at Virginia Tech has great health benefits and you never have to lift a finger. It may be the happiest workout of your life. It’s called Laughter Yoga.
Tod Whitehurst teaches the class on Wednesday mornings. There’s no jokes, no comedy, no humor. Just laughter.
"We take advantage of the fact that laughter is contagious. Once you start getting laughter going, it usually continues on,” said Whitehurst
The techniques imitate laughter and involve childlike games. For some its awkward, at first.
"Yeah, at first I was like, ‘Why are we laughing?’ because we were laughing for no reason, really," said Briana Lanktree. “I had no idea what to expect. And you know what? Laughing at 8 a.m. in the morning is really great and it really pumped me up and made me feel less tense and less stressed."
And that's where the health benefits come into play.
"If you've ever been a runner, and you get that runner high after about fifteen to twenty minutes, you get the same thing from sustained laughter,” Whitehurst said.
Laughter also helps blood flow, oxygenates the body and brain, reduces stress, strengthens the immune system and creates a positive mental state.
For a list of classes and how you can get involved in Laughter Yoga, click here.