Autumn updates from the SPIRIT project

The SPIRIT project sparks and facilitates an important discussion on the need to prioritise the mental wellbeing of participants in sport. This is relevant at the grassroots and elite level of sport. Here are the latest news about the project.

We are pleased to share with you that the official channels of the SPIRIT project are up and running! SPIRIT now has its official webpage, Twitter account and LinkedIn company page as well. Follow these channels to stay-up-to-date with developments within the project and to access research and outputs of the project as they become available.

The SPIRIT partnership is currently working hard on laying the foundations of the project's aim to develop a framework for humane, inclusive and empowering coaching and sport clubs that nurture mental wellbeing. These foundations include a review of existing research and knowledge on the topic of sport and mental wellbeing. This piece of work is led by ICSSPE and will be made available this winter. In addition, another project partner, MIELI, is leading on the mapping of existing good practices, which exemplify how sport organisations and practitioners can take action to protect and promote the mental wellbeing of their participants. Both of these areas of work will be fundamental for the development of recommendations, a framework and the online education tool which will ultimately empower the sport sector to protect mental wellbeing.

The restrictions and uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic has brought some challenges to the project, as the partnership is so young and we are resorting to meeting online for the foreseeable future. However, the global situation has also highlighted the importance of a holistically healthy society and the importance of protecting our mental wellbeing. The global mental health crisis has only worsened under the current circumstances with inequalities coming to the fore, and as a result of suffering from loss, ill-health, economic instability, unemployment and acute isolation under lockdown restrictions. The SPIRIT project, co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme, advocates for prioritising the protection of mental wellbeing during times and situations of adversity, but also during day-to-day life and activities. This is done to ensure that individuals and society are resilient, happy, healthy and able to live a full life to explore their potential in sport and beyond!

Ahead of World Mental Health Day and in the continued period of uncertainty ahead, the SPIRIT partnership calls for continued collaboration and efforts to make sure that sport in Europe allows us to maintain strong and healthy minds and bodies.