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080620 POWDER SPRINGS, GA (WEST COBB): TOPIX Mary Lou Warden, 75, is shown in a Friday 6/20/08 photo taken during a Laughter Yoga class being held at the West Cobb Senior Center and taught by instructor Craig Whitley. Warden was doint the “lion laughter” pose where participants opened their mouths wide and roared in laughter while holding up their “paws.” About 28 people participated in this Laughter Yoga class and demonstration. The four components of Laughter Yoga: 1) clapping, 2) breathing, 3) childlike playfulness and 4) laughter exercises. Whitley and his wife Helen are psychotherapists and counselors with a practice in Woodstock. Several years ago they became interested in Laughter Yoga after taking a class. In 2006 they became certified instructors. Laughter Yoga was created in Inida in 1995 by Dr. Madan Kataria, a family physician who wanted the public to benefit from the overwhelming scientific evidence that laughter is indeed the best medicine. And, says Whitley, “It’s Laughter. It’s not a drug and they can’t charge us for it!” Today, Laughter Yoga is practiced in over 60 countries and there are about 10,000 Laughter Yoga clubs. Whitley has been doing Laughter Yoga sessions at the various Cobb County senior centers. Those interested in participating in a Laughter Yoga class can do so on Wednesdays from 7pm-8pm at the Northside-Cherokee Medical Office Building, 100 Stone Forest Drive, Woodstock Georgia. These classes are free to whoever wants to come. STANDALONE PHOTO FOR METRO AND AJC.COM. Andy Sharp/ asharp@ajc.com

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