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N . org .11 in . >is ■> b vbv* o over worked as the heart When every other part of the body sleeps, it keeps on ts perpetual motion. Every increased effort of action demands from the heart more force. A man runs to catch a train, and his heart boats audibly. He drinks wine, and the blood rushes through its reservoir faster than over was intended by nature. His pulse rises after each course at dinner. A telegram arrives, and liis heart knocks at his side. And, when any one of these “excitements ” is over, lie is conscious of a corresponding depression—a sinking or emptiness as it is called. The healthy action of all the members of our frame depends upon the supply of blood received from the central fountain. When the heart’s action is arrested, the stomach, which requires from it a large supply of blood, becomes enfeebled. The brain, also waiting for the blood, is inactive. The heart is a w•' willing member, but if it be made to fetch and carry incessantly—if it be “ i«at upon,” as the unselfish member of a family often is, >t undergoes a disorganisation which is equivalent to its rupture. And this disorganisation begins too often nowa days in the hearts of very young children. Parents know that if their sons are to succeed at any of these competitive examinations which have now become so exigent, high pressure is employed Hence young persons are stimulated to overwork by rewards and punishments. The sight of a clever boy who is being trained for competition is truly a sad one. The precocious coached up children are never well. Their mental excitement keeps up a flush which, like the- excitement caused by strong drink in older children, looks like health, but lias no relation to it; in a word, the intemperance of education is over straining and breaking their young hearts. If in the school-room some hearts are broken from mental strain, in the play ground and in the gymnasium others succumb to physical strain. “Itis no object of mine,” says Dr. Richardson, “ to under rate the advantages of physical exercise for the young ; but I can scarcely over-rate the danger of those fierce competitive exercises which the world in general seems determined to applaud. I had the opportunity once in my life of living near a rower. He was a patient of mine, suffering from the very form of. induced heart disease of , which I am now speaking, and ho gave me ample means of studying the conditions of many of those whom he trained both for running and rowing, I found occasion certainly to admire the physique to which his trained men were brought; the strength of muscle they attained ; the force of their heart ; but the admiration was qualified ,by the stern fact of the results.” But, indeed, it is not by over-work so much as by worry and anxiety that om hearts are disorganised. “ Laborious mental exercise is healthy, unless it be made anxious by necessary or unnecessary difficulties. Regular mental labor is best carried on by introducing into it some variety. ” Business and professional men wear out their hearts by acquiring habits of express-train haste, which a little attention to method would render unnecessary.

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Bibliographic details

Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 29, 2 December 1879

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UNKNOWN Ashburton Guardian, Volume I, Issue 29, 2 December 1879