Mental Health v Medals

Thursday 18th June 12:30 - 13:15

Performing in high-pressure environments will undoubtedly have significant impacts on athletes’ performance and wellbeing. As we head towards Tokyo 2020 Olympics – how has the landscape changed during the last 4 year cycle; is it really about mental health v medals or can we have mental health and medals?

In 2018 the EIS and UK Sport announced its mental health strategy for the high performance sport system and have a dedicated team implementing this strategy- demonstrating a growing recognition of the benefits of athletes’ mental health and the impact on injury, illness, availability and readiness to train and compete. Supporting mental health is becoming accepted as a contributing factor in athletes’ ability to thrive and succeed in high pressure environments.

Our panel of experts will explore – what we mean by ‘mental health’; What we know about mental health in elite athletes; How can we support athletes’ mental health; and what can be done to support the athlete with life after sport.


Chevy Rough, Wellbeing Specialist


Phil Smith, Director of Sport at Sport England

Frances Houghton, Former Olympic Rower at Member of UK Sport’s Mental Health Steering Group

Dr Amanda Gatherer, Clinical Psychologist and member at EIS Mental Health Expert Panel

John Donnelly, Head of Integrity, UK Sport at Chair, UK Sport’s Mental Health Steering Group