World Rugby and International Rugby Players’ Brain Health Initiative

World Rugby, national unions and International Rugby Players are launching the Brain Health Initiative today, a global education campaign to increase understanding of the importance of brain health within the rugby family. 

Initially aimed at current and former professional players, this groundbreaking campaign is being launched at the World Rugby Medical Commission Conference in London. It reflects World Rugby’s ongoing conversations with member unions, leading independent scientific and medical experts, and local healthcare authorities with specialist provision for medical and social care directed towards brain health. This is also a reflection of World Rugby’s aim to maintain rugby as the most progressive sport on player welfare. 

There are 12 ‘modifiable risk factors’ that can affect our brain heath and influence our risk of getting dementia. These risk factors include lack of physical activity, lack of social contact, depression, heart disease and
brain injury.  

At the heart of World Rugby’s campaign is this educational video featuring leading independent experts Professor Craig Ritchie, Professor Willie Stewart, Dr Fiona Wilson and Karen Chan. The video describes how former and current players can use what we know about the 12 modifiable risk
factors of dementia to optimise their brain health

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