Prince William and David Beckham Team up for Mental Health Initiative

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Prince William teams up with David Beckham to spread mental health awareness through U.K. Football organizations.

The soccer system, consisting of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, has come together to support mental health by signing the “Mentally Healthy Football” Declaration. Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, is bringing to light the importance of mental health within the sport.

A press release stated, “The ‘Mentally Healthy Football’ Declaration will see governing bodies, leagues and organizations from across U.K. football recognizing that mental health is as important as physical health, and pioneering a ‘team approach’ on this important issue.” It continued, “Together, the U.K. football family will build on the important work that clubs and football organizations are already doing, working together to ensure the mental health of players, staff, managers, coaches and officials is prioritized.”

In a post on his Instagram account, the Prince added, “This is a legacy we can all be proud of—following a season we will never forget.”

After the declaration, the Duke joined a video call with the Captain of England’s Men’s team, David Beckham. Beckham opened up regarding his own struggle with mental health. Referring to the red card he received during a game against Argentina back in ’98, Beckham explained reactions as “pretty brutal.”

“I had a support system within Manchester United, the manager, and obviously family. But did I feel it was ok at the time to go to someone and say I need help? No, because it was a different era, and I just felt that I had to keep it all in and deal with it myself. Whereas now I’m the one preaching to my kids and to other kids that I talk to out there that it’s really important to talk,” said the England’s Men’s Team Captain.

In the Instagram post below, Beckham wrote, “Over the years I’ve learned that to play at your best, mental well-being is just as important as physical fitness.” Beckham tells his followers he wants players in football to feel comfortable reaching out for help.

“We all know now that it’s ok not to be ok, and it’s ok to say that,” he continued. “It’s ok to come out and say I need help.” Let it be known that mental health is just as important as physical health. For more information on mental health in sports, click here.