Yoga instructor Avi Liran

People laugh 300 to 400 times a day when they are children, but only about 16 times a day when they reach adulthood, according to laughter yoga instructor Avi Liran.

For the uninitiated, what is laughter yoga?
Laughter yoga is built on two elements. The laughter part is laughing exercises to bring out your inner child. The yoga part is breathing exercises that’ll teach you to calm down, meditate and recharge. Sometimes we bring music to the sessions and make people dance. Throughout the session, I’ll bring out the benefits of laughter to life. There’s a lot of spiritual wisdom that I can teach.

Cool. And how do you become a laughter yoga instructor?
Someone gave me this book A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Enlightenment by humor expert Lenny Ravich. Later, I saw an article that said Singaporeans are the least happy in Asia. So I asked Lenny, “Would you mind coming to Singapore?” He said, “I’d love to.” We started doing brochures and I was researching on the net when I found out about laughter yoga. I was so intrigued that I decided to go to Paris and meet the guru Madan Kataria who wrote the book Laugh for No Reason. And I became a teacher.

So what happened when you were in Paris?
It was a phenomenal five days and five nights. I laughed about nine hours a day and lost 1.5 kg. I got 30 new friends from all over the world. I found a lot of the benefits of laughing. The quest allows me to share my ability to laugh at life with others and make other people happy. And I’m one of the guys who also makes money out of it. You can say I literally “laugh my way to the bank!”

Haha. And what are your goals in the near future?
I’m going to teach a two-day course for people to become laughter leaders. I’m going to look for people to subscribe. The more the merrier. I have two dreams. One is to have 50,000 Singaporeans to go to the National Stadium or somewhere on Laughter Day, which occurs in May, and do laughing exercises. I’ll tell you my other dream after I’ve reached it!