Keeping the rugby community healthy

England Rugby Rugby Safe and Simplyhealth logo

Mental wellbeing is an important part of why we play rugby, and it’s essential we look after it


At Simplyhealth, we want to put player welfare at the heart of the game, which is why we’re working with England Rugby to provide advice and resources to keep the rugby community healthy.

We want to look at how we can have healthy discussions around mental wellbeing, create kinder cultures and the importance of looking out for each other. So the Mental Health Foundation have put together these tips for us starting these important conversations. 

Tips for talking about mental health



Talking to someone about their mental health


  1. Listen carefully to what they tell you
  2. Don’t try to diagnose  
  3. Don’t try to second guess their feelings
  4. Set time aside with no distractions
  5. Let them share as much or as little as they want to
  6. Keep questions open ended
  7. Talk about self-care
  8. Offer them help in seeking professional support


        Some good conversation starters include:

  • Asking someone about their sleep may be a good starting point 
  • Asking someone “what is good for your mental health?”
  • Perhaps as a prompt, ask the same question without using the word “mental”.


How to develop a kind club culture where people check in


  1. Create a club culture where club members check in with each other
  2. Be proactive and not just reactive about checking in
  3. Ask people twice how they are, how they really are
  4. Be present when they are talking to you
  5. Listen and be listened to
  6. Really give your time to support
  7. Recognise unhealthy relationships
  8. Prioritise the person before the performance 

Mental health problems are so misunderstood that someone who acknowledges your problem, continues to accept you and treats you with compassion is doing something extremely important.

Where to get more information about mental health


Your health and wellbeing as a rugby athlete

The Mental Health Foundation has created this guide on 'How to look after your health and wellbeing as an elite athlete in rugby'.

How to look after your mental health


It’s important to take care of yourself and get the most from life. Here are 10 practical ways to look after your mental health from the Mental Health Foundation.

How to look after your mental health using exercise


The Mental Health Foundation talks about how physical activity is good for your body, as well as your mental health and wellbeing.

Head in for success


This digital booklet highlights potential challenges that dedicated athletes face and offers guidance and suggestions on how to deal with these stresses.

Getting the help you need

Here you'll find details on services and organisations that you can speak to, if you need advice and support with your mental health.


Access to help 24/7

If you have a health plan - remember you have access to a 24/7 confidential help line
that offers compassionate support and structured counselling whatever challenges you face.

Log in to your account and visit My Wellbeing for more information.


More about the Mental Health Foundation (MHF)

The Mental Health Foundation is the leading charity for everyone’s mental health. With prevention at the heart of what we do, we aim to find and address the sources of mental health problems so that people and communities can thrive. We are also the home of Mental Health Awareness Week. This takes place from 10-16 May this year and the theme is “Nature”.

For more information about the Foundation, visit their website