Loughborough Sport to partner with Sporting Minds UK

In recognition of Mental health Awareness Week (10 May – 16 May), Loughborough Sport is further strengthening its mental health support to its student-athletes through a new partnership with Sporting Minds UK.

Sporting Minds UK is a registered charity that seeks to raise awareness and provide support for positive mental health in sportspeople aged 16 to 30 where they can access free, fast and confidential private mental health support.  

As part of the collaboration, Loughborough Sport has launched a video campaign across its social media channels in which its sporting community share experiences to normalise the issue of mental health in sport.

These will include interviews with Richard Riakporhe, British Cruiserweight and WBA International Champion boxer, Ross Edgley, adventurer and Loughborough University alumni, James Greer, Loughborough Students’ Athletic Union President and Sport Executive Officer, and other University sporting professionals and practitioners.  

Loughborough Sport have also formed an advisory board across its clubs which will improve mental health awareness and education, increase support and mental health training, create, and deliver fundraising events, and tackle the stigma around mental health.

Jo Simpson, Commercial and Facilities Director, Loughborough Sport, who has led on integrating Sporting Minds UK at Loughborough, said:

“What’s really great about this relationship with Sporting Minds UK is that we’re doing things differently.

“We have created an advisory board so that Sporting Minds UK and mental health support are properly embedded within our sporting community. This has been set up by James Greer (Sport Executive Officer, Loughborough Athletic Union) and Callum Lea (Sporting Minds UK founder) and it seeks to put mental health support at the heart of every student-athlete club.

“We are adding to the existing mental health support provision that the University provides to all its students with a unique focus on sport. This could be from deselection to injury, to poor performance. This a fantastic partnership.”

Callum Lea, Sporting Minds UK founder, said:

“Sporting Minds UK is a young charity providing support for athletes across the country and this partnership with Loughborough Sport sets a clear example to everyone else.

“Having the world’s best sporting university taking mental health so seriously shows that no matter how good you are at sport, how driven and competitive you are, you need to treat your mental health as seriously as possible, and that’s why Loughborough is a dream partnership for us.

“By partnering with us, Loughborough Sport are showing that although competition is so prevalent across the University, they actually see their athletes as human beings first and foremost and not just competitors. To have a university that treats their athletes so holistically is an absolute pleasure to work with.”

James Greer, Loughborough Students’ Athletic Union President and Sport Executive Officer, added:

“We wanted to ensure that our students felt like they could be part of the journey towards improving and increasing the support for mental health within the Loughborough Sport community.

“The advisory board we have created is a fantastic opportunity for students. We are going to see discussion panels, educational awareness sessions, and fundraising events for the charity where students can get involved and give something back as well as providing support to those that need it.”

Student-athletes wishing to access Sporting Minds UK services can visit its website:  https://www.sportingmindsuk.org/sportingmindsuk-support/

Loughborough Sport and Sporting Minds UK’s video campaign can be found on its social media channels on Instagram @lborosport, Twitter @lborosport, and on its Facebook and LinkedIn channels as Lborosport.

For more information on Sporting Minds UK, visit its website HERE.

For further information regarding mental health support at the University, contact its Mental Health Support Services team HERE.

Notes for editors

Press release reference number: 21/75

Notes for editors

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2021 QS World University Rankings and University of the Year by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2019.

Loughborough is in the top 10 of every national league table, being ranked 7th in the Guardian University League Table 2021, 5th in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020 and 6th in The UK Complete University Guide 2021.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

The Loughborough University London campus is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities. It is home to influential thought leaders, pioneering researchers and creative innovators who provide students with the highest quality of teaching and the very latest in modern thinking.