May 14, 2022, 8:30 p.m.
When the Festival of Sport returns to Norfolk this summer, it will feature a number of international sports stars and expertise. However, we focus not only on the physical development of young people – the center of the weekend is also well-being and mental health.
Rugby was a big part of Simon Trower’s life. Unfortunately, also depression and anxiety. And while rugby helped him manage his mental health, he realized that it was only a “temporary fix,” so he founded Brave Mind.
Upon its return to Holkham Park, the pioneering charity will hold a well-being meeting at the Festival of Sport from Friday 12 August to Monday 15 August.
The fact that the festival has room for well-being shows that its founders, rugby internationals Will Greenwood and Austin Healey, are aware of the importance of mental health for athletes.
They want young people who come to try new sports and learn from top competitors to be made aware of the importance of their well-being.
Brave Mind works with rugby clubs and schools to bring mental health to the forefront of their community. According to the charity, a quarter of those who play rugby have poor mental health, and Simon wants it to be the norm for rugby people to talk about mental health and support each other.
That means fighting a culture of toxic masculinity in a self-propelled male game and helping players understand that being vulnerable is not a sign of weakness – it’s actually the bold and daring thing you have to do when you’re hit by something like depression or anxiety.
“I’ve experienced and still experience varying levels of depression and anxiety from an early age,” says Simon. “I went through a variety of treatment methods, from drug trials to visits to a clinical psychologist. I live with it every day, based on my personal experience I have designed a number of coping strategies, one of which is to make sure I talk to people or family when I feel bad.
“Rugby has always been a good form of personal therapy. I left things off the field and enjoyed the release on it. Looking back now, it was a very temporary solution for me.
“I put on my ancestor, I hid behind ‘jokes’ when I longed deep inside for real connections and to be myself.
“Life goes on and I’m glad to see that the stigma towards mental health is changing, especially in sports.”
The relaxed atmosphere of the festival, where international sports stars teach young people and wipe with their parents at the bar in the evenings, gives Brave Mind a chance to start a mental health conversation at an earlier stage.
And Brave Mind works with other charitable partners of the festival, including the Matt Hampson Foundation, which aims to inspire and support young people seriously injured in sports.
Its founder, Matt Hampson OBE, is a former rugby propsman who became paralyzed from the neck down after a landslide accident while training with an English under-21 team in March 2005.
The line is complemented by the Youth Sport Trust – a leading UK charity that improves the education and development of every young person through sport and play.
It runs inclusive and innovative programs, brings together communities of educators and provides practical tools and resources to help every child enjoy the benefits of life-changing games and sports.
And while the festival gives young people a chance to improve their skills in their favorite sports or try completely new disciplines, the main theme of the weekend is that “no one stays on the bench”.
The event begins on Friday night with a warm welcome and open-air cinema, while Saturdays and Sundays are full of lessons from rugby, football, cricket, football and tennis to kayaking, martial arts, boxing, archery, trampoline and much more, as well. such as fun runs, exhibitions and shows.
While the program is aimed mainly at children aged five to 17, there are many activities for preschoolers, including baby gym lessons and dance classes, and adults can take part in selected sports activities and yoga classes. chat or sports massage.
And of course it wouldn’t be the right festival without live music and DJs to party every night and without the opportunity to camp on site.
One-day tickets are now also available for those living closer to the event, at GBP 185 for one adult and one child, with GBP 105 for other children and GBP 85 for additional adults.
Tickets for the whole weekend cost GBP 370 (1 adult + 1 child aged 5-17). Additional tickets for adults 160 GBP, additional tickets for children 210 GBP. Children under 5 are free. Tickets include entry to the event and a complete program of sporting events for all children and entertainment for all three nights. On-site accommodation starts at GBP 70 for three nights per tent or caravan park, ready to ring tents from GBP 250 (3 nights, up to 6 shares).
Find out more about the charity partners of the Sports Festival: