Top England Youth boxers given key mental health education
October 1, 2020 | by Matt Halfpenny
Boxers bidding to compete for England at World Youth Championships level are being given the ‘toolkit’ to address any mental health problems they may encounter in their quest for medal success.
England Boxing is teaming up with Mental Health UK to co-deliver a four-week online course called Your Resilience that supports athletes to manage their mental health and develop the confidence to speak up when they feel something is wrong.
The first cohort of male and female Youth boxers begin their sessions tomorrow (Friday 2nd October).
The course content has been adapted to cover key topics that are relevant to young boxers such as exam stress, weight management, social media and dealing with disappointing team selections.
It will be delivered via Zoom by Mental Health UK’s Rianna Fleming, along with England Boxing staff members Amanda Coulson, Andrea Rankine and Grace Pearson, and comes ahead of the rearranged AIBA World Youth Championships in Kielce, Poland next April.
“Competing at the top level of their sport, as these athletes are, obviously comes with a degree of pressure and it can sometimes be difficult for young people on our Talent Pathway to know exactly how to handle that,” said Rankine, England Boxing’s Interim Talent Pathway Manager.
“Your Resilience provides a toolkit for them so that they can talk about it if a problem does crop up in an environment where so much focus has traditionally been around performance and physical health, rather than mental health.
“More than ever, there is a need to appreciate and understand from a coaching and team management point of view that it’s important to look after the person, not just the athlete.”
The Your Resilience programme was originally designed to be delivered face to face as part of the boxers’ induction onto the England Talent Pathway back in March, but was postponed due to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
It has already enjoyed considerable success in schools and colleges, with the content and scenarios now adapted specifically to resonate with boxers.
Katie Legg, Director of Strategy and Partnerships at Mental Health UK said: “Mental Health UK is excited to join forces with England Boxing to deliver our Your Resilience programme to the next generation of male and female boxers stepping into the ring.
“We’re proud of the impact the programme has already made in equipping young people with the tools and techniques to build their resilience.
“We are keen to get started with England Boxing and tailor this offering to meet the bespoke needs of the boxing community, where we know there has historically been a focus on physical health, and there is a growing need to promote positive mental health.”
For more information on the Your Resilience programme, click here.
You Resilience is just one part of England Boxing’s commitment to support people from across the boxing community with their mental health. More resources are available by clicking here.