The Bendigo Laughter Club in action.

Have you ever driven past Ewing Park on a Saturday morning and thought, what on earth are these people doing?

Short answer – they’re laughing. I had heard about the Bendigo Laughter Club on the radio years ago and often considered going along.

I decided to take the plunge and head along to find out what it was all about.

I drove in and found the park and a couple of cars patiently waiting, for what I wasn’t sure, but I had a gazillion questions and just as many giggles floating through my mind before I even got out of the car.

Next thing there came an onslaught of smiling faces and I must say, the warmest, most generous and heartfelt greetings I have ever encountered.

Some people provided a simple introduction, others hugs and handshakes. 

Exercises were imaginative, at times hilarious and sometimes in honesty a little embarrassing, but amazingly, only for a fleeting moment.

It might sound a little corny, but I found the experience quite exhilarating. At first, I was laughing at the situation, then at myself and all the while, holding my stomach with tears rolling down my cheeks.

I must say though, it was the best way to start the day.

We shared our joy and laughter with each other and we shared it with strangers as well.

From the lady walking her dog, the cyclists and the motorists passing by, all waving at us and smiling.

What an amazing gift to share – happiness.

Research shows that laughter can contribute to increasing health in our immune, cardiovascular and nervous system as well.

No wonder they say laughter is the best medicine.

Did you know, tears of laughter actually flush toxins from our body?

Well, I really did purge on Saturday let me tell you.

I was surprised to learn that there are over 50 laughter clubs nationally with more than 30 of those being here in Victoria and many in rural and remote areas.

The Bendigo Laughter Club meets at 8.30am every Saturday at Ewing Park on the Williamson Street side.

All you need to bring is yourself and be prepared to let yourself go.

Oh, and it’s free.

– Fiona Bradshaw