GRINNERS ARE WINNERS: Sue Brown is an international laughter ambassador and conducts workshops across Australia.
GRINNERS ARE WINNERS: Sue Brown is an international laughter ambassador and conducts workshops across Australia. Warren Lynam

Susan's remedy is to laugh away bad times

IT'S known for reducing pain and boosting the brain, but now laughter is coupling with yoga and adding to its therapeutic value.

Frontrunner of the Australian laughter movement, International Laughter ambassador and Sunshine Coast resident Susan Brown is overjoyed with the number of laughter yoga participants lately.

After discovering the health benefits of laughter yoga for herself in 2002, Ms Brown has since travelled the world sharing her "gift" and seen incredible things in the name of fun.

Out of all these participants, the story of a young boy stands out the most for Ms Brown.

He had experienced suicidal tendencies before learning of laughter yoga that completely changed his life.

"I've seen people go from being really venomous characters to being completely different people," she said.

"Even if nothing else had worked and I had had that one result, saved that one life, it would be worth it."

With nearly three million Australians diagnosed as depressed, Ms Brown was passionate about raising more awareness of laughter yoga.

Beyond Blue statistics reveal one in seven young people aged from four to 17 will experience a mental health disorder.

Registered nurse Carol Hegerty, who has a masters degree in mental health nursing, believes laughter has amazing benefits.

"It releases oxytocins into your brain which helps reduce stress and anxiety," she said.

"Even a fake laugh has a therapeutic effect."

Ms Brown insists that once people start laughing, they usually have fun and once the fun begins, crazy things happen.

She now does workshops across Australia from the Sunshine Coast to communities in drought. Her workshops aim to put a smile on the dial and show that laughter really is the best medicine.

For more information about Susan Brown's workshops, visit www.whitepages.com.au/lets-laugh-11181523/maroochy-river-qld-11181514B.

 

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