The National Basketball Association (NBA) reminded players this week that they are offering mental health help for any players. Players were urged to look after their mental wellness and take advantage of the newly enhanced programs.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and National Basketball Players Association executive direction Michele Robert’s sent out a letter saying, “ Each of our offices has newly-enhanced mental wellness programs, which we encourage you to use to manage stress, anxiety and other challenges. It’s a critical step that can also encourage teammates and fans alike to understand that it’s a sign of strength, not weakness, to ask for help.”
Multiple players in recent years such as Kevin Love and DeMar DeRozan have opened up about their struggles with mental health. Even coaches such as Cleveland Cavalier’s coach Tyronn Lue, who was treated for anxiety during the season, have been sharing their stories.
NBA players are hugely influential in today’s culture. Them speaking out about their mental health struggles is further breaking down the stigma around mental illness. Mental health is also not as widely discussed in minority communities or amongst men. Having POC males in powerful positions open about their mental health journeys is encouraging.