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Covid-19: Mental health support
Football West News
With the COVID-19 outbreak forcing the postponement of grassroots football in Australia until 31 May, Football West is encouraging our clubs, associations and members to check in on their players and ensure they are looking after both their physical health and their mental wellbeing.
This unprecedented time and extreme change to our routines may bring feelings of being overwhelmed, anxiety, stress or fear.
Expert health advice tells us that these feelings are completely justified and in time will pass. Now more than ever we need to keep moving and stay connected – to our clubs, to our coaches, to our family and to our friends.
Football is scheduled to return after 31 May. For now, we have put together some tips to support your Mental Health & Wellbeing during COVID-19.
Evidence shows that spending just 10 minutes outside a day, especially in the morning, can be greatly beneficial. It will top up your vitamin D, kickstart your natural energy system and boost your mood.
Keep your body moving! Ensuring you are getting at least 30 minutes of physical activity each day will not only ensure you keep up your fitness ready for when the season kicks off but will boost those natural endorphins, improving your mood. Remember – run, walk, swim or dance, it does not matter how you do it, as long as you move.
Keep in contact with your family, friends and community. Whether they are daily texts, FaceTime, Zoom meetings or following your football community’s Facebook page – stay connected. Let them know how you are feeling and what you are spending your time doing. Online team challenges are great for keeping your team accountable – your team still needs you!
Many of our players may have the feeling of a loss of identity by not being able to see their team mates, attend training or school etc. Maintaining a normal daily routine, even during isolation, is so important for supporting mental health. Continue to wake up early, make breakfast, head outdoors, move your body, then attend to some tasks. This will make the transition back into a normal routine, post COVID-19, much easier and allow us to get back into our normal rhythm sooner.
This downtime is a great time to learn that skill you have been wanting to focus on! Open up YouTube, take an online training session or simply get out in your backyard with your football and get practising. Having something to focus on each day will reduce worry and stress and give you a feeling of accomplishment. Do not forget to celebrate your successes!
Continue To Practise Self Care
Now more than ever it is important for our players to be looking after their body. Eat well, move often, drink plenty of water and get enough sleep! It may feel like we are on holiday and a great time to relax a little on your diet and routines but like anything it is all about balance. Looking after our physical health will also support our mental wellbeing and allow us to get back on the field quicker, when the time is right!
This is a strange and confusing time and it is okay to be feeling a little out of sorts. There are many resources available to support our football community, do not be afraid to reach out and ask for help.