Rugby – Tackle your Feelings to host free Mental Wellbeing panel discussion

Screen Shot 2016-05-20 at 11.14.12IRUPA in partnership with Zurich will host a free mental wellbeing panel discussion as part of its ‘Tackle Your Feelings’ campaign at Thomond Park, Cratloe Road, Limerick on Wednesday, 25th May 2016 from 7.30pm – 9.00pm.

The panel will feature Munster scrum-half and Tackle Your Feelings Ambassador, Cathal Sheridan, who recently came forward to tell his own personal story about the impact of injury on his mental wellbeing. He will be joined by two Munster and Ireland Rugby legends, Alan Quinlan who has openly spoken about his experience of tackling depression and Marcus Horan who will MC the event. Dr Eddie Murphy, Clinical Psychologist and Tackle Your Feelings advisor will add to the discussion by providing practical advice as to how attendees can proactively manage their mental wellbeing.

‘Tackle Your Feelings’ is an all island mental wellbeing campaign which sees national and international rugby stars come forward to tell their own personal story of the issues they have faced off the pitch.  The event is free to attend and to secure a place simply register on

The discussion will explore the importance of taking care of your mental wellbeing and how people in Ireland need to be more proactive in resolving emotional challenges before they escalate into a crisis. The discussion is another step towards achieving the vision of a society that embraces emotional vulnerability. One in four Irish adults will experience mental illness at some point in their lives[1].  ‘Tackle Your Feelings’ seeks to emphasise the importance of preventative measures in maintaining good mental wellbeing. 

Speaking about the event Cathal Sheridan said, “I would encourage anyone with an interest in their mental and emotional wellbeing to attend this event. It’s a great opportunity for people within the Munster community to come together to learn and discuss how they can tackle their own feelings. I hope in hearing my story others struggling will recognise that there are practical ways to resolve these feelings and will be encouraged to talk to people they trust and get support.”

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Research conducted by IRUPA demonstrated that over half (53%) of Irish adults have gone through a challenging life event but did not discuss their feelings with anyone. Additionally, 71% feel that they would be treated differently if they had a mental health issue and other people knew about it. 

Omar Hassanein, CEO, IRUPA, said, “We are delighted to be hosting the first of our four provincial panel discussions which will take place in Thomond Park in Limerick.  The Tackle Your Feelings campaign is a really important element of the work that we are doing to help people improve their mental wellbeing and highlights some of the struggles that our rugby players experience as part of their everyday lives.  Visit to find out more.”

Elaine Hayes, ‎Corporate Responsibility spokesperson at Zurich, commented, “At Zurich, we pride ourselves on a commitment to making a difference in the local communities in which we operate and that is why we are delighted to be partnering with IRUPA to encourage greater debate and awareness of mental wellbeing in Ireland. As an issue that affects such a large proportion of Irish people, mental health is something that needs to be discussed more openly and honestly; be it on the pitch, in the office, or in general day-to-day life. We hope the people of Munster will come and join us for an evening that is sure to inspire a conversation amongst both rugby supporters and non-rugby supporters alike and keep mental wellbeing top of mind.”

As part of the ‘Tackle Your Feelings’ campaign Ireland and Leinster front-row Jack McGrath, came forward earlier this year to speak about how he coped with the death of his brother by suicide in 2010, alongside Irish women’s player, Hannah Tyrrell, who talked about how she overcame her struggles with self-harm and bulimia.

All three players’ videos are hosted on the website

This talk is free of charge and aimed at anyone interested in their mental wellbeing. Attendees must register on A Q&A session with the audience will take place following the discussion.