Wednesday, October 31, 2012


For a long time, I have been inundated with people who want to study laughter yoga with me but are unable to travel to the places in which I am offering seminars. In response, I created a very interactive, six-week on-line course at the Iowa School of Laughter Yoga. Students enroll and are immediately sent a PDF file of my laughter manual and the first lesson. Then a practice CD (Be Laughter), inspirational posters and The Little Book of Big Laughs arrive in the mail. Students put together their practice group and engage in each of the lessons, sending their reports to me as they complete them. I respond to these reports with further food for thought. The course culminates in an exciting graduation ceremony done by phone or Skype in which we go through all of the normal graduation antics: laughing "Pomp and Circumstance," a gibberish graduation address by the valedictorian, the announcement of graduation (with subsequent cheering and total freak-out), and the taking of the Laughter Pledge. Afterwards, their diploma (otherwise known as a laughing degree-hee-heeeee!) is sent to them.

I have found that my e-students are very self-motivated and almost always go on to start laughter clubs and lead a lot of laughter yoga around their communities. It has been a delight to work with people who live far away—yet still engage in learning the joy of laughter yoga.

Recently, I have been working with Linda Williams, a student from Greenwood, South Carolina. Just as she was about to complete the course, she reported that she would be in the Midwest for a family visit. I was in the midst of my September laughing tour, which included presenting at the 2012 All America Laughter Yoga Conference. Nevertheless, we were able to schedule a time and place to meet—and this meant Linda would be driving 2 hours out of her way to make this happen!

So after all that complicated scheduling, Linda and I got to meet face-to-face and have coffee in Coralville, Iowa. It was exciting to have an in person conversation about our lives and our passion for bringing joy and healing to the world through laughter yoga.  It felt like we were long-time friends and I was so grateful she spent the extra time so we could meet. Then, we had an AMAZING laughter graduation ceremony right there in the courtyard! I triumphantly presented Linda with her diploma and the nearby coffee-drinkers couldn't help but snicker a bit. 

"Laughing Laura's e-course is an awesome opportunity to share in her creativity and guidance. She had great understanding and endurance with me—even when my course took longer than it should because of 'life complications.'  The on-line seminar is very well put-together and thorough. It totally prepares you to effectively lead laughter yoga. Getting to meet Laughing Laura face-to-face was the highlight of my course. And it definitely livened up the day for the folks at Starbucks THAT day! Laughing Laura is truly a blessing of love, light and laughter in our world."
—Linda Williams

* I am not currently taking new students with the e-course because I want to make sure I have ample time to mentor each student. If you are interested in future e-learning opportunities, however, please send me an email at

Thursday, October 25, 2012


I have just spent a most amazing time with a group of laughter yoga students in Rochester, Minnesota. It was a class through the Iowa School of Laughter Yoga, which is affiliated with the Laughter Yoga University of Bangalore, India. We held the certified Leader/Teacher training retreat at Assisi Heights Spirituality Center at the Sisters of Saint Francis. This is a gorgeous retreat center on a generous portion of green space right in the heart of Rochester. Read more at their website.

The pictures below tell the story of our fabulous adventures together. Double click them to view in a larger format.

This is the Sisters of Saint Francis facility where we stayed and laughed. It felt like a bit of Europe as we strolled around the beautiful grounds.
We invited the sisters to do a laughter yoga practice session with us. Here we are with the laughing nuns (note that the one behind me is wearing a flower headband on top of her habit). We all had a fun time together, as you can see.

To experience the glorious spiritual power of laughter, we laughed through the sacred labyrinth. Here a group of laughers are rejoicing in the center.

Kristin and Amber laughing in the labyrinth

Ann Marie laughing in the labyrinth

Lily Bear, Mary Ellen's dog, laughed in the labyrinth with us

Laughing Laura and Kathryn at our costume party

Terri, the clown princess

Kristin, the cute banana

Ann Marie in her fabulous clown wig

Phoenix in the crabby hat
Helen as the laughing fairy (her shoes light up, too)

Laughter dancing

The teachers and teacher students

The Laughter Yoga Leader Graduation picture. Back row: Phoenix Soleil, Kristin VanDyke, Laughing Laura,  Mary Ellen Schmidley. Front row: Amber Cahue and Jane Schmidley

This is the entire group at the Laughter Yoga Leaders' graduation

Mary Ellen and Jane Schmidley—the laughing sisters with the retreat's laughing dog, Lily Bear

Laughing Laura & Phoenix from Berkeley, CA

The Laughter Yoga Teacher Graduation picture: Laughing Laura, Kathryn Kimmins,  Helen Juknelis, Ann Marie Gullickson and Terri Reasoner

If you would like to study laughter yoga in Alaska, you are in luck! I have just scheduled my first certified Laughter Yoga Leader class in Anchorage, Alaska. Read more at and please spread the word to any friends you may have in Alaska.

Thursday, October 18, 2012


This is a personal note to thank Laughing Laura for presenting at the 2012 All America Laughter Yoga Conference in Chicago, IL, on 9/20-23, 2012. 

Laughing Laura brought our joy to a new level by leading us in a series of laughter dances. Using her experience as a dance instructor, she engaged the group in playful dances, which combine rhythm and laughter. It was profoundly spiritual, yet buoyant and fun. This is the fourth time Laura has presented at the national Laughter Yoga Conference and each time, she has brought a new innovation which was met with great enthusiasm. 

We are grateful for the contribution she is making to the world wide laughter movement and hope to learn from and laugh with her again at our 2013 conference.

Mirthfully yours,
Sebastien Gendry

Founder, CEO

American School of Laughter Yoga, LLC |
Laughter Online University |
Ecole Franco-Américaine du Yoga du Rire |

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


In September, I traveled to Chicago for the All America Laughter Yoga Conference. It was the fourth one at which I’ve presented. This year, my contribution was primarily laughter dances. I’ve been experimenting with combining laughter with various dances—both folk and popular. My presentation was called “Laugh Deeper: How to Harness the Spiritual Power of Laughter Yoga.” Within that presentation, I taught a laughing Hora dance (from the Jewish faith), led a laughing drumming circle (from the Native America tradition) and a laughing labyrinth (and ancient spiritual practice from many world religions). I also collaborated with Anne Timpany since she and I were both working with the spiritual realm. That way, I also got to experience her Embodying Joy exercises as part of our joint break-out session. The whole conference was uplifting as always. Here are some fun pictures from the event. Some are borrowed from Laughter Yoga Amerca and the rest are my own. Enjoy the pics and consider attending next year’s conference. More information at:

The whole group (mostly)

A circle dance I led

During my presentation

At the costume party

My morning session of breathing and laughing and singing and blessing

The laughter blessing in my session

Another laughter blessing is being given

More laughter blessings

Ha ha ha!

The closing part of my morning session

Lyrics to a simple laughter dance I taught

With the AMAZING Sarito Sun

With the AMAZING Christine Bills (wearing her You are Amazing shirt!)

Laughing with Anne Timpany and Sarito Sun

Laughing with my new friend from Russia

with Christine, one of my many HA HA sisters

with my pink feathered friends

With the AMAZING Merv Neal from Australia

Merv, Anne and Sebastien

Merv and Sebastien taking their own picture

With my HA HA Sister, Linda Leclerc from Canada

With my roomie and gelotologist friend, Hilary Licht

Laughing with Sarito and Linda

Go Merv! 

With Laughing Jodi Hart

Christine and I with our friend KO from Japan!

with Linda Tourlukis

Sarito's presentation

During the HA HA Sisterhood ritual led by Linda Leclerc