Welcome to the Athletes Connected newsletter

Each quarter we will share updates surrounding our program and other student-athlete mental health initiatives. This issue features our new injury and mental health video series and interviews with athletic staff on mental health,  as well as spotlights other initiatives from around the country. 
Injury and Mental Health Video Series
For student-athletes, injury may come with several struggles that affect their mental health such as feeling isolated, questioning their identity, or losing confidence.

Adam Coon

In the first of this three-part new video series, All-American heavyweight wrestler, Adam Coon, shares how he coped with the tough times that came with recuperating from a season-ending injury and losing out on his dream to train with Olympic athletes.

"Learning to focus on myself, my recovery, and my career helped me embrace the temporary lifestyle of my injury." -- Adam Coon
Erin Finn

Nine-time All-American long distance runner Erin Finn followed in the series. She redefined her identity after experiencing recurring foot fractures that led to her missing out on competing for a national title and a chance at the Olympics.

" By redefining my identity and finding purpose,
I redefined my life." - Erin Finn

Q & A Series
This new series began in October and shares how coaches, administrators, trainers, and other athletic staff approach mental health in their interactions with student-athletes.

Mike Hilde

"If we help our athletes to use the tools that we know are effective in improving mental health, then they are going to be able to go anywhere" -- Mike Hilde

Head Diving Coach Mike Hilde opened the series sharing how he takes his role as a coach outside the pool.    [ Read More ]
Jeremy Marra

"There is no shame to talk about anything. That is the biggest piece... There is no shame in bringing it up or asking the question"
- Jeremy Marra

Senior Associate Athletic Trainer for the U-M Men's Lacrosse program, Jeremy Marra, continued the series, explaining his critical role as the point of contact for all health-related services for student-athletes.    [ Read More ]
Mental Health Tip
Notice your thoughts, but don't automatically accept them all as true. Humans have thousands of untrue, or distorted thoughts each day. When we can see our thoughts at a distance, and create some space between ourselves and our thoughts, we can more easily evaluate which ones are true, useful or helpful to us, and which ones we should let pass by as what they are - just thoughts.

Learn skills and strategies on our website.

In The News
College Athletes Are Only Starting to Get Access to the Mental Health Care They Need

The Ringer mentioned Athletes Connected as one of the few college athletic programs destigmatizing mental illness and encouraging student-athletes to seek help. Kally Fayhee, former U-M swimmer, is quoted saying how the program has impacted her and those she has openly spoke about her struggles with. Kally was one of the first U-M student-athletes to share her story through Athletes Connected. 
Club Wolverine is Leading the Way in Mental Health Training

Emily Klueh, Program Coordinator for Athletes Connected, was featured in SwimSwam for her work in bringing mental health education to club swimming. [ Read More ]
Klueh Gives Back to Athletes and Swimming in Many Ways

Klueh was also featured in USA Swimming sharing her path in prolonging her competitive swimming career to playing a large role in student-athlete mental health. [ Read More ]
Spotlight: Other Student-Athlete Mental Health Initiatives

Oregon State University launched #DamWorthIt on January 17th to bring awareness to the mental health crises in collegiate athletics. This campaign was spearheaded by gymnast, Taylor Ricci, and men's soccer member, Nathan Braaten. [ Read More ]
Notes of Hope

Inspired by the U-M Messages of Hope Board, the University of Missouri - Kansas City Kangaroos athletic department decided to create a Notes of Hope board on their campus.  [ Read More ]
Athletes Connected is a partnership between the University of Michigan Depression Center, School of Public Health, and Athletic Department.