Alarming mental health statistics revealed about retired rugby players

According to statistics published by the Rugby Players Association (RPA), 62 per cent of retired players have suffered from mental health issues.

The RPA’s survey exposed the “true scale of rugby’s mental health crisis” and highlighted that mental wellbeing and finance were the two major issues that retired players face.

Approximately 200 retired rugby players were surveyed; of those 46 per cent of them were former internationals and 77 per cent had either played 100 matches at club level or international level.

The statistics indicated that 62 per cent of retired players have had mental health issues and 52 per cent said that two years after retiring they did not feel in control of their lives.

Moreover, half of the players experienced financial issues in the first five years of retiring and 46 per cent of ex-rugby players expressed that they were unhappy with the preparation for life after sport.

Omar Hassanein, Chief Executive of the International Rugby Players was shocked by the RPA’s findings.

“That 62 per cent figure is very alarming,” said Mr.Hassanein. “That is almost two in three players suffering from mental health issues. If that is not a major issue that requires focus then I do not know what is.

“There is no point in looking at that figure and simply saying it is alarming. As the game grows, and the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France is going to be the most lucrative [World Cup in history], no doubt, then the game needs to find a way to look after the personal side of the athletes, otherwise, it is only going to get worse.”

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