Monday, September 19, 2016

Laughter--the best workout?

Maybe older people trying to exercise is a little funny--but that's good, say researchers at Georgia State.

I know if I got on the ground to do a pushup or anything, I would have to live down there the rest of my life.

The researchers went to four assisted living facilities that used a moderate intensity group exercise program called LaughActive.

In addition to the stretches and mild exercises, the participants simulate laughter. Watching this, most start actually laughing.

Both simulated and real laughter have health benefits.

For six weeks, the study participants attended two 45-min physical activity sessions a week that included 10 laughter sessions of 30 to 60 seconds each.

The participants showed significant increases in mental health, aerobic endurance and perceived benefits--meaning satisfaction with the program, which was epxressed by 96%.

The laughter part also got high marks.

Adults should participate in 30 mins of physical activity are least five days a week to reap health benefits such as lower mortality, reduced risk of chronic conditions,  and age-related declines in endurance.

The laughter, apparently, makes it more palatable.

Even people with cognitive problems can do this--there is no joke to "get."  The point is the fake laughter.

Uh, OK--that's pretty funny.

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