Anxiety and Stress – It’s just not Football !

Anxiety and stress can wreak havoc on people and footballers are no exception. The pressure to continuously perform at peak levels and succeed at all costs is extremely demanding on football players, both physically and mentally. Stress and anxiety affect the young and the old, and those experiencing these conditions will often feel tense and overwhelmed. Obviously these feelings do not serve professional footballers and other sportsmen. The best thing an athlete can do, is as soon as they recognize that they are struggling to cope, is to make an effort to seek professional help in the form of a clinical psychologist or qualified counsellor. Treating anxiety and stress early is important in order to avoid it leading to long term depression. There are ways to reduce anxiety and stress provided it is not too severe and that your lifestyle allows for it. This would include:

  • Taking time out to relax. Walks in Nature, relaxing hobbies
  • When feeling overwhelmed, pause and count to 10 slowly
  • Talk to somebody about your feelings
  • Concentrate on your breathing. Breathe deeply.
  • Ensure that you are eating a well balanced diet.
  • Reduce you Caffeine and Alcohol intake

Some of our local footballers that have been contracted to play for Cape Town based sides have struggled with stress and anxiety. Being a professional sportsmen often requires you to be away from home for extended periods of time which only adds to the problem. Southern Suburbs psychologist, Anita Prag, is well know psychologist that has years of experience in helping people cope with anxiety and stress. Stress can manifest itself in many forms. The psychological symptoms include, feeling unable to cope, irritability, being fearful, having anxious thoughts and low self esteem.

anita prag

There have been several articles written recently about Anita’s successes in helping patients navigate through difficult periods of their lives. There is saying that says “It’s always darkest before dawn”, well from all accounts, Anita is the psychologist that will help cast light onto your problems, helping you grow through your difficulties. As a psychologist in the Southern Suburbs of Cape Town, Anita has client base that extends from the City Centre right through to Simonstown. Anita is not just a psychologist that is capable of treating adults. Dr Anita Prag comes highly recommended as a psychologist for children and adolescents too. She offers “Play Therapy” sessions for children where she performs behavioral and emotional assessments, as well as performing IQ assessments and helping children with learning difficulties. Anita’s practice in positioned on the Main Rd in Bergliet. There are several Cape Town psychologists that are registered with the Health Professions Council of South Africa but Dr Prag is one of the few that we can report as having a high standard of service. If you do find yourself struggling with anxiety, stress or depression and are in need of a souther suburbs psychologist click here for more information about Anita’s practice. So much attention is given to the physical well being of footballers and sportsmen that their psychological well being is sometimes overlooked. It should be a priority for trainers and coaches to ensure that all areas of their well being are being attended to.

Charitable Sportsmen

Standish Park Rangers Football Club Christmas Appeal : After last year’s successful Christmas appeal where the club donated to the Preston Branch of the Rspca Standish decided that this year’s charity should be Derrian House. Derrian House is an extremely important organization which looks after children who are terminally ill and ensures that they have as normal life as possible by excellent support and care.  Derrian House is also well known for its excellent care and making the children feel special and happy regardless of the sad situation that has brought them there in the first place. We as a club wanted to support them at this important time of the year and so set up a toy appeal within the club. Players then donated both new and also old toys from their own childhoods to the appeal with excellent results.

It was clear that this appeal meant a lot to the people within the club and on the 20th December two of the first team players Simon Yarwood and Anthony Coppenhall along with manager Will Nolan and Chairman Bill Nolan presented their donations to the care team nurses and fundraising team at Derrian House. This was a really special presentation and it meant a lot to both the staff at Derrian House and the Standish team.

Local Business chips in

It’s fantastic to see local sports stars giving back to their communities that value them so much. There are youngsters all over the world that are disabled or unable to participate in sporting activities for whom a visit or some communication from a sports personality is a huge event that they would treasure for the rest of their lives. In South Africa there are many sports stars that are involved in charity work and community projects. Just this year, Wayde van Niekerk, the world’s four hundred meter athletics champion, donated five hundred thousand rand to Groote Schuur Hospital’s neo natal unit. South African national cricketers, Mark Boucher and Jacques Kallis are also extremely active in community work and charity organizations. The two are often seen side by side, participating in charity sports events. Recently Mark Boucher appeared as the guest speaker at the Saint Luke’s Hospice Charity event at a seasid restaurant in Hout Bay, Cape Town. Mark Boucher recently founded his own charity organization, the Castle Lager Boucher Legacy. Boucher entered the forty two kilometer Otter Trail run to raise funds and awareness around Rhino poaching. Mark has encouraged his long time friend and professional trail runner Ryan Sandes to join him in this venture. Ryan Sandes has won the Otter Trail run in the past and competes in trail running globally in events all over the world. Ryan was quoted as saying that the Otter Trail is one of his favorite trails and that he felt honored to have been asked by Boucher to support him in his drive against Rhino poaching.