Often on the lookout for modalities that would help improve his work as a family counselor, Paolo Martin L. Trinidad, a graduate of the Center for Family Ministries, enrolled in a one-hour workshop on Laughter Yoga basic exercises. The concept struck the candidate for Masteral in Guidance and Counseling that there was more to laughter than being the best medicine. It was a tool that could heal the emotions and the spirit as well.
To achieve a deeper grasp of Laughter Yoga, he surfed the Net, made contact with the founder of Laughter Yoga International, Madan Kataria, a medical doctor from India, who gave him a scholarship in the Doctor Kataria School of Laughter in Bangalore, India.
Paolo. a yoga enthusiast, was intensively trained by Kataria himself. He returned to the country on June 12 with the rare distinction of being the first and only Laughter Yoga Professor of the Philippines certified by Laughter Yoga International. The day was auspicious because it also birthed Pinoy Laughter Yoga which hews to the LYI principle of laughing for no reason.
The Laughter part comes in the form of uniquely Pinoy exercises; yoga, thru pranic breathing. It taps the playfulness, love of adventure and the spontaneity of the child in everyone.
With mindful participation on the laughter exercises interspersed with breathing, one loses 1.3 calories per minute. More importantly, 15 minutes of Pinoy Laughter Yoga equates with 30 minutes of jogging, rowing or treadmilling, an ideal cardio-vascular workout.
And that’s only one benefit. There’s a whole lot more.
For the double major in Philippine Interdisciplinary Studies and Voice, it was but natural that the interest he pursued in India would take on a nationalistic character. He comes from the Conservatory of Music in UP, the bastion of nationalism.
Thus spun Laughter Yoga into the phenomenal Pinoy Laughter Yoga, adapted to the Filipino psyche and tailor-made to the needs of the Filipino soul. It ultimately encourages nationalism, cohesiveness and promotes innate Filipino values.
Founder Paolo is a much sought after speaker on the subject of wellness. He recently conducted a workshop at the First International Ayurveda Yoga; and twice at Wellness Convention and Expo Phil., Family and Pastoral Counselors Association of the Philippines. Prospective projects are lined up subject to his availability.
Pinoy Laughter Yoga has grown by leaps and bounds since its inception in June 2010. Paolo has blitzed in only five months various sectors with a 98% rate of success. Among many are pre-schoolers, the hearing impaired, the bi-polar, persons with autism, ADHD, cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, a schizophrenic; government offices, i.e., DSWD, DOLE, National Housing Authority, Department of Health, National Labor Relations Commission; institutions Makati Med Center nurses, Cardinal Santos Pediatric Dept., Chinese General Hospital College of Nursing, Asian Hospital Medical Center, St. Luke’s Medical Center Q.C. Oncology patients, St. Luke’s Medical Center, Global City, National Council of Mother Superiors of Carmelite Monasteries, Oblates of St. Joseph, Oblates of St. Benedict, San Sebastian College Recoletos, Missionary Catechists of the Sacred Heart, Opus Dei; corporations, i.e., Camellia Homes, HOLSIM, Standard Chartered Bank; Land Bank, Phil. Institute of Certified Public Accountants, National Federation of Junior Accountants, Philippine Institute of Accountants; civic groups TOWNS awardees, Soroptimists, Natasha Goulbourne Foundation, Psychological Association of the Philippines, Family and Pastoral Counselors Association of the Philippines, Children in Confllict with the Law, UP Psychology classes, De La Salle U Psych classes in Dasmarinas, Cavite and Taft, Miriam College Pre-school Teachers, Miriam College Employees Cooperative, PNU Psych classes, San Beda High School, Bulacan State U, inmates of the NCR jails and Correctional Institution for Women, Abu the MILF, City Government of Marikina, Famnet, Foundation, etc.
All in all, Pinoy Laughter Yoga has conduc ted 420 presentations, including trainors training. Among its early trainees were 70 police personnel from the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology with the the then Chief Superintendent Serafin Baretto as participant.
By all these, and with varied modules custom-built for attendees of all ages: children, adolescents, adults and the seniors, Paolo’s spiritual adviser has remarked that Pinoy Laughter Yoga may indeed one day unite the Filipinos.