Gurgaon’s laughter club held thrice a week — on Wednesdays and Saturdays at DLF’s J Block Park and, on Sunday, at Leisure Valley Park in Sector 29 — is a great way to beat lifestyle ailments.
If you can LOL your way out of life (read stress), why not! Especially when you got a variety of laughter to pick from — the lion’s laugh, the sky walk, the bow-and-arrow laugh, the holy walk, the self-laugh and the rollercoaster, of course.
Laughter Together, a Gurgaon-based laughter club formed by residents of DLF City, does exactly that. Clichéd as it may sound, but the club’s aim is to spread happiness through laughter.
Formed in 2011, the club now has 200 members. It has been set up along the lines of Delhi Laughter Club, which came up a few years back. Its president, Dr Umesh Sahgal, played a vital role in establishing the Gurgaon club.
The members also do yoga and breathing exercises. Thrice in a week — on Wednesdays and Saturdays at DLF’s J Block Park and on Sunday at the Leisure Valley Park in Sector 29 — members come together for two consecutive sessions of 60 minutes.
And what does all this happiness cost? Zilt!
Dhanraj Kundnani, 65, one of the founder members of the club, says, “Laughter brings positive energy, which helps to connect with people quickly and improves relationships. When I laugh, I attract more friends, and that really shores up my confidence.”
Here’s what another member of the club has to say.
“An exercise routine is the best way to manage today’s ailments, such as stress, depression, ulcers, blood pressure, asthma, allergy, diabetes and obesity. But our busy schedules don’t allow us to maintain a routine — and sometimes just exercising can make the whole exercising bit a tad tedious. So, laughter combined with exercising multiplies the impact. It also adds to our mental wellness,” says Shanti Swarup Kalra, 78.
Doctor Amita Arora adds, “Laughter is like a cardiac workout, which brings more oxygen to the body and brain. It makes one feel more healthy and energetic. Laughter reduces physical, mental and emotional stress at the same time. It also strengthens the immune system.”
The laughter club has brought hope to many who suffered from depression, loneliness, and other ailments.
Senior citizen Usha Sehgal, who used to suffer from severe bouts of depression, is now doing way better after pursuing laughter therapy. Sanjiv Ahuja, too, got a handle on his sugar problem after joining the club.
Retired couple SN Girhotra and Jyotsana also felt a surge of positivity after following a simple laughter routine. “Laughter helps create a positive mental state to deal with negative situations and negative people. It gives hope and optimism to cope with difficult times,” explains wife Jyotsana.
International World Laughter Day is celebrated every May on 6th. The club has decided to organise several creative workshops and walks across the city to mark the day.
Come, join the happiness.