2 Mar
2021

Live Music Is Scientifically Proven To Help Universally Lower Stress Levels

first_imgA scientific study published in Public Health in 2016 shows clear-cut evidence for the benefit of attending live music events. The groundbreaking test comes in at the biological level, as scientists measured levels of cortisol and cortisone both before and after a concert.Cortisol is a hormone factor, produced under conditions of psychological stress. By measuring saliva samples before and after a specific concert, the entirety of the 117 participants showed major reductions in cortisol levels after the fact.While previous studies had shown similar results, this was the first conducted in a natural concert setting, as opposed to a laboratory. The results showed that cortisol levels were reduced in participants of all ages.“These results are in line with 22 previous studies showing that listening to music in the controlled setting of either a laboratory or a hospital can reduce cortisol levels,” said one researcher in an interview with The Telegraph. “It is of note that none of these biological changes were associated with age, musical experience or familiarity with the music being performed. This suggests there is a universal response to concert attendance among audience members.”The one drawback, however, is that the music selection was limited to classical. Further research would be needed to see if other genres show similar conclusions. Still, as lead researcher Daisy Fancourt said, “This is the first preliminary evidence that attending a cultural event can have an impact on endocrine activity.”So, keep on living for live music!last_img read more

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29 Sep
2020

Icelandic government takes on nursing home pension liabilities

first_imgThe agreement was made because some of the non-profit organisations that run the nursing homes had run into financial problems.A ministry spokeswoman said: “In general terms, those financial difficulties could be related to the financial crisis six years ago and its effect on Iceland’s economy.“Taking over the liabilities of the nursing homes ensures they are able to continue to provide service to their clients.”The liabilities relate to members of Division B of LSR, and of LH as a whole (LSR also runs a fully funded scheme, Division A, and an individual scheme, Division S).Both Division B and LH are defined benefit schemes and constitute a mixed system partly based on funding from accumulated contributions, and partly from supplemental contributions from public sources.The rights of fund members in these arrangements are based on their working life and the relative proportion of full-time work.Both these arrangements were closed to new members at the end of 1996.The liabilities transferred to the government amount to nearly ISK6bn (€40m).About half this amount has already been recognised as a liability on the government’s balance sheet, as the state already guarantees the pension fund liabilities in Division B of LSR, and in LH.As at 31 December 2013, the combined net assets for all LSR divisions came to ISK485bn, and for LH, ISK26bn.While the government has agreed to assume responsibility for existing liabilities, the nursing homes as employers have committed to paying their share of the liabilities, as well as paying extra pension contributions on behalf of staff members working at the homes affected, to avoid the accumulation of new debt. Iceland’s Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs has signed an agreement with 11 nursing homes and two pension funds, transferring certain pension liabilities for the nursing homes’ employees to the state.The two funds are Lifeyrissjodur starfsmanna rikisins (LSR) – the pension fund for state employees – and Lifeyrissjodur hjukrunarfraedinga (LH) – the pension fund for nurses.The nursing homes’ employees belong to one or the other of these schemes.The liabilities include contribution increases to pensions that have been accrued in the past year but left unpaid.last_img read more

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20 Sep
2020

Sceaux far, so good

first_imgUn De Sceaux attempts to live up to his billing as the most exciting novice chaser around when he lines up for the Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy at Cheltenham on Tuesday. The seven-year-old will ensure there is no hiding places as he loves to bowl along in front and run his rivals into the ground. He overcame a blip when he came down on his fencing debut, when well clear at Thurles in November, to win in good style at Fairyhouse the following month. Un De Sceaux then took the Grade One Irish equivalent of the Arkle at Leopardstown on his only subsequent start in impressive fashion by 15 lengths from Clarcam. His trainer Willie Mullins is already seeing him as a future Queen Mother Champion Chase contender. “He’s the type of chaser you love to train – the really fast two-miler that will maybe make into a champion chaser some day,” said the County Carlow handler. “Horses that just come down and take a fence, whatever way they meet it, are exciting to watch. His style of racing makes the whole thing very heart-stopping, but that’s the way it is and that’s what we have. “He’s an extraordinarily short price, but the punters and the bookmakers have all decided if he stands up he wins. I’m happy to go along with that! “He learnt his trade jumping in France and we think that’s a great base for chasers. He’s not mistake-prone. He normally meets his fences right and jumps them right, but I do know that he’s able to put in a short one as well. “That will stand him in good stead around Cheltenham.” His main market rival is Vibrato Valtat, who has done nothing but improve all season and has won his last three races in tremendous style. “He is obviously progressive and his rating of 162 is extremely high for a novice – at this stage of his career he is rated higher than Azertyuiop,” said the Ditcheat handler. “He was struggling with his breathing last year, which was why he was finishing tamely. This year he has turned that around. “He needed his first run and hasn’t looked back since. He’s dead straightforward now and you can ride him anyway you like. “Un De Sceaux has looked awesome when he gets round, but he has fallen once and he might find the Arkle different to the small fields he’s been running in. If he gets in a rhythm he’ll be very hard to beat. ” Josses Hill is highly rated by connections but has yet to really deliver on the track over fences, despite being successful at Doncaster and finishing second in good races at Ascot and Kempton. “He’s a brilliant jumper and has got great scope. He’s just got to put it all together,” said trainer Nicky Henderson. “If he had won by a neck at Kempton and not been beaten, people would have said it would have been OK. “The jumping will test Un Des Sceaux, as well. It promises to be a fascinating race.” Three Kingdoms has won three of his four starts over fences, with his only defeat coming at the hands of Vibrato Valtat at Kempton over Christmas. “Although he’s been winning on heavy ground, everybody who has ridden him has said he wants better ground,” said trainer John Ferguson. “I’m not saying for one second he’ll be good enough to win, but I think he’ll give a good account and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he’s battling up the hill. “When he was beaten at Kempton he jumped well but when he won at Doncaster he didn’t jump well as he’d lost his confidence schooling at home. “Since then we’ve schooled him intensively and I feel his jumping will be a lot slicker.” God’s Own was only third in that Kempton race, but his trainer Tom George believes the better ground will help the seven-year-old return to the form he showed earlier in the season when he won the Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter. “He had a quiet patch in the middle of the winter struggling on the soft ground,” said the Slad trainer. “His work has been very impressive recently and I couldn’t be happier with him. He’s really come alive in the last couple of weeks. “The ground is very important to him. It wasn’t that we weren’t happy with him in the winter, but you can see a big change in him now. He’s very sharp.” The Gordon Elliott-trained Clarcam will renew rivalry with Un De Sceaux despite also being declared for the Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase on Wednesday as a precaution. “Clarcam has been left in the Champion Chase in case he falls at the first in the Arkle. It’s just a precaution,” said Eddie O’Leary, racing manager for owners, Gigginstown House Stud. “Un De Sceaux looks to be a monster, but there’s no point giving him a freebie. “On the book we can’t beat Un De Sceaux, but we certainly have to have a go.” Press Associationlast_img read more

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20 Sep
2020

Top sides will take note of Japan upset – Johnny Sexton

first_img Japan’s 34-32 victory over double World Cup-winners South Africa in Brighton lit up the opening weekend, shrewd coach Eddie Jones masterminding the greatest upset in the competition’s history. Fly-half Sexton believes Ireland’s 50-7 victory over Canada in Cardiff looks even more impressive in the context of Japan’s stunning triumph. Press Association “Our game was really good and we got the result we deserved, but we maybe saw the flip-side of what can happen if you maybe take your eye off the ball and the gap is narrowing.” Ireland motored north from Cardiff to their new base of St George’s Park in Burton-on-Trent on Sunday, at the Football Association’s purpose-built facility. Team manager Mick Kearney declared an injury-free squad following the Canada battle, save for the hamstring trouble Robbie Henshaw continues to fight. Connacht centre Henshaw remains in contention to be fit to face Romania at Wembley, but is yet to return to training. “Thankfully in relation to yesterday apart from the normal bumps and bruises associated with Test rugby we’ve got a clean bill of health which is good news,” said Kearney. “Robbie is progressing very well through his rehab and the expectation is that he’d be available for selection for the Romania game on Sunday. “He hasn’t trained yet but the expectation would be that would train this week.” Ireland lost their final two warm-up matches against Wales and England, but almost flicked the switch back to grind back into top gear against Canada. British and Irish Lions playmaker Sexton said Ireland are starting to feel match-hardened now, and just when it matters most. “That’s what those games are for really, to make sure we’re ready,” said Sexton of the warm-up fixtures. “That’s why we play them and they are badly needed. “You can’t get match-fit training hard. “We trained really hard in the summer, but the fitness you need in the match is totally different. “I felt a lot better at the weekend. “We’re all starting to get our match-sharpness and match-fitness and that’s what we want at this time now.” Ireland face Romania at Wembley Stadium next weekend, with Sexton calling on Joe Schmidt’s men to maintain their focus. “That victory for Japan has given the sides that are the so-called minnows a boost, to see Japan do that,” said Sexton. “You saw Uruguay do that against Wales, they put it to them for the first 20 minutes and made life difficult for them. “Argentina were obviously making life tough for New Zealand too. “It gives everyone a boost to know anything can happen. “And it’s given us an alarm call I suppose. “It was great to watch Japan win like that, and it made our performance and our result over Canada a lot better, seeing them beat a team like South Africa. “We obviously could have been on the end of something similar a couple of hours earlier. Johnny Sexton believes Japan’s shock victory over South Africa has handed Ireland a World Cup “alarm call”.last_img read more

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20 Sep
2020

Everton boss Roberto Martinez defends Swansea over managerial transition

first_img The South Wales club have earned a reputation for being well-run under chairman Hew Jenkins, who appointed Martinez back in 2007, but appeared to lose their way briefly after Monk was dismissed in early December. A fruitless trip to South America failed to persuade Marcelo Bielsa to move to the Barclays Premier League and under Alan Curtis’s caretaker stint they picked up just five points from six matches before finally appointing former Udinese boss Francesco Guidolin as head coach on Monday. Everton manager Roberto Martinez has defended former club Swansea over accusations they sacked Garry Monk without a plan for his replacement. “If you are asking me what way of managing is more effective it is when you have continuity,” said the Toffees boss. “In the modern game we are inclined to chop and change and not have too much of a path for teams to develop. “I think it is a real shame but I am sure it will turn around and go back to the most effective manner, which is supporting a manager and understanding how difficult winning games on a consistent basis is.” Martinez’s Everton have shown just how difficult it is to win regularly in the league. They have just one victory in the last nine matches, having scored in the 90th minute and then conceded an equaliser in the eighth minute of stoppage time twice – against Bournemouth and last weekend at Chelsea. As a result the Toffees boss will not take their struggling opponents for granted. “We know they are going to be really difficult and a dangerous team and we will have to be at our very best just to cope with the effect a new manager can have in the dressing room,” he added. Criticism was beginning to grow around the way the transition had been handled, but Martinez felt the Swans approached it in the right way. “I wouldn’t agree that you have to follow a plan in order to change a manager,” he said ahead of Sunday’s visit of his former club. “It was an honest decision which they felt they needed to make and then went into a process to try to identify the new man. “I don’t think that is wrong. I feel it is wrong when you are in your job and you feel the club is moving actively to replace the man who is taking the team to win a game. “If you are asking me I prefer a football club who identify a problem, act and then move into step two. “I don’t think it is correct from a human values point of view that you replace a manager before you get rid of the current one – I don’t think that is right at all.” Four men have been in charge of Swansea in less than two years – Michael Laudrup, Monk, Curtis and now Guidolin. Martinez believes that may have contributed to them struggling in the Premier League this season. Press Associationlast_img read more

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12 Jan
2020

Grow Op busted in Dawson Creek

first_imgThe Dawson Creek Drug Unit and General Duties members, executed a warrant to search a residence at the corner of 18th street and 88th ave at approximately 4pm Wednesday.A sophisticated marijuana grow operation was uncovered in the basement of the house.  Some 650 plants in various stages of growth, including 378 mature and budding plants were recovered.  In addition, police have seized a sizable quantity of cash and four improperly stored rifles.A 33 year old male resident, and his 22 year old female partner are in police custody facing multiple charges related to the raid.  Their names are not being released until they have been formally charged.- Advertisement –last_img

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