• Revista Speak Up Digital
  • Revista Speak Up Digital

310 - The Laughter Festival

Ri, que vai passar! Rir faz bem ao corpo e à mente – serve também como instrumento de meditação, na yoga do riso. Nem é necessário um humorista: basta rir. Em Manchester, entre 8 e 14 de junho, acontece o imperdível Festival da Risada (com seletiva para o campeonato mundial!).
by John Rigg

Easy Listening

This month Britain celebrates laughter with the second annual UK National Laughter Festival. The UK National Laughter Festival is looking for laughter champions. They will represent the country at the World Laughter Championships later in the year. The UK festival takes place at various venues in Manchester from June 8th to 14th.


Have you got an unusual laugh? Can you make others laugh just by smiling at them? You could be a future champion. There is no need to remember a joke . Simply laugh! After all, laughter is infectious . And it can help everyone. It makes us healthy . It makes us happy.


The UK National Laughter Festival will include public laughing events, laughter yoga, laughter therapy and the National Laughter Championships. There will be seminars on the new science of laughter for health, building community spirit and new laughter applications for schools and business . The organisers are Feelgood Communities CIC, a non-profit organisation.


The laughter movement is a fast-growing international phenomenon. There are no comedians . This is not about comedy. People can learn to laugh for no reason. And the effects are extremely beneficial. Laughter releases endorphins. They make us feel good. Laughing relaxes the whole body, so it reduces stress. It also reduces our inhibitions and social barriers. It can boost our immune systems, improve respiration and circulation. Laughter sessions can be used by companies, too. It is a great team-building tool . It helps improve communication skills. It encourages positive thinking and creativity. There is also one more very important fact about laughter: it is completely free .


The laughter movement began in India. Dr. Madan Kataria invented Laughter Yoga in 1995. Kataria discovered the benefits of laughter. So he created his new form of yoga that takes traditional yoga breathing techniques and them with laughter. He now leads a worldwide movement. He founded World Laughter Day in 1998, which is celebrated on the first Sunday of May every year. Today there are laughter clubs in over 60 countries around the world. Kataria is a patron of the UK National Laughter Festival.


In 1995 Dr. Kataria wrote an article titled Laughter: The Best Medicine. He discovered many scientific studies that described the strong effect laughter has on the human body and mind. He decided to test the theories. He started his first laughter club. They met in a Mumbai public park in March 1995. Originally, the group stood in a circle. One member stood in the middle and recounted a funny story. After two weeks no one had any more stories. Kataria resolved the problem. Research suggested there is no difference between genuine and pretend laughter . The benefits were the same. In the following group meetings, he explored ways of laughing without humour. Kataria combined his discovery with yoga breathing. He invented Laughter Yoga, and started a worldwide movement! Website: www.laughteryoga.org See also: www.worldlaughterpledge.org