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Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2011 Mar;26(3):322-7. doi: 10.1002/gps.2545. Epub 2010 Sep 16.

Laughter yoga versus group exercise program in elderly depressed women: a randomized controlled trial.

Author information

  • 1Department of Counseling, School of Psychology & Training Sciences, Allameh Tabatabai University, Tehran, Iran. Mahvash.shahidi@gmail.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Laughter Yoga founded by M. Kataria is a combination of unconditioned laughter and yogic breathing. Its effect on mental and physical aspects of healthy individuals was shown to be beneficial.

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of this study was to compare the effectiveness of Kataria's Laughter Yoga and group exercise therapy in decreasing depression and increasing life satisfaction in older adult women of a cultural community of Tehran, Iran.

METHODS:

Seventy depressed old women who were members of a cultural community of Tehran were chosen by Geriatric depression scale (score>10). After completion of Life Satisfaction Scale pre-test and demographic questionnaire, subjects were randomized into three groups of laughter therapy, exercise therapy, and control. Subsequently, depression post-test and life satisfaction post-test were done for all three groups. The data were analyzed using analysis of covariance and Bonferroni's correction.

RESULTS:

Sixty subjects completed the study. The analysis revealed a significant difference in decrease in depression scores of both Laughter Yoga and exercise therapy group in comparison to control group (p<0.001 and p<0.01, respectively). There was no significant difference between Laughter Yoga and exercise therapy groups. The increase in life satisfaction of Laughter Yoga group showed a significant difference in comparison with control group (p<0.001). No significant difference was found between exercise therapy and either control or Laughter Yoga group.

CONCLUSION:

Our findings showed that Laughter Yoga is at least as effective as group exercise program in improvement of depression and life satisfaction of elderly depressed women.

Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

PMID:
20848578
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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