Feel a bit off?

It’s more common than you think.

1 in 5 Kiwis experience some form of stress, anxiety or depression. The rugby community is no different. HeadFirst can help. 

Scroll below to get started and hear players talk about their experiences. 

 

What is mental fitness?

Find out what mental fitness is all about, why it’s important and the best ways to look after it. 

Finding things tough?

Life not feeling so great at the moment? Find out about the struggles we face and see how you can tackle them.

Worried about how you feel?

Been feeling down, anxious or on edge lately?
Take a test to find out more and figure out your next step.

Coaches & Caregivers

Learn what to look out for, how to provide support and look after yourself at the same time.

Help a mate

Worried about a mate? Not sure how to help?
Find out how to start a conversation and ask if they’re ok.

Getting help

Need extra support? Not sure where to go?
Find out how to get help and support with how you’re feeling.

Talking mental fitness with the Canes

Should we spend more time on our mental fitness? The Hurricanes think so. Listen to Nehe Milner-Skudder and Dane Coles share why they think it's important.

Watch Video

“I’m talking about it”

Hear players and others share their thoughts on mental fitness and some of the ups and downs we can all experience. Featuring HeadFirst ambassadors Nehe Milner-Skudder, Ruby Tui and Keven Mealamu.

Top Tips for Mental Fitness

Having a healthy mind is just as important as having a healthy body. Doing even just 2 or 3 of these activities on a daily basis will help you to maintain and strengthen your mental fitness.

Connect With People

Supportive, strong relationships with friends and whanau can be a great source of strength. Arrange to catch-up with friends or family or help out in your local community.

Look After Your Body

Fuel your body with the best nutrition and find time to exercise outside of training such as surfing, golf or going for a walk.

Give Your Time To Others

Doing something nice for someone else releases those ‘feel good’ chemicals in our brains and is great for our mental fitness. Investigate where you could volunteer your time.

Talk To Someone You Trust

Sharing what’s going on in your life, good and bad, with people you trust is a great way to celebrate success and get things of your chest when you need.

Practice Gratitude

Taking time each day to list the things you’re grateful for improves our ability to look for the positives. Try using a gratitude journal to record your thoughts.

Be In The Moment

Mindfulness is a great way to create space in a busy day and refocus. Just 5 minutes a day can improve your ability to cope with stress.

Prioritise Sleep

Sleep is one of the biggest influences of mental fitness, most people need between 7-9 hours and there are so many ways to help improve your sleep. Click here to learn more.

Take Time Out

Finding time to relax can be a challenge. Block out time in advance that is protected ‘you’ time. This could be a holiday or simply a day off to rest.

Need Help?

Lifeline

Nationwide 24-hour, 7 days a week counselling service.

Free to call 0800 543 354.

Depression Helpline

Talk to a trained counsellor who can discuss your situation and find you the right support/tautoko. Free to call 24/7 on 0800 111 757.

Anxiety Line

Provide support and help around understanding anxiety and peoples experiences. Free call available 24/7 on 0800 ANXIETY (0800 269 4389).

The Lowdown

A website for young New Zealanders to help understand depression and anxiety from their own perspectives. Get in touch with a trained counsellor by free txt (5626).

Youthline

Free, confidential and non-judgemental youth service. Free to call, 0800 376 633 or free text 234. You can also email them at talk@youthline.co.nz

1737 Need to talk?

A free call and text service for New Zealanders feeling down, anxious, overwhelmed or just need to chat to someone. 

What’s Up

Free phone counselling service for young people, 7 days a week from 1pm to 11pm. They also have a free online chat 7-11pm every day. Free to call 0800 WHATSUP (0800 942 8787).