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Classified in: Health, Sports and recreation

The Iron Butterfly Launches a First-Ever Website to Advance Mental Health in Women's Sports

The Initiative, Launched in Conjunction with Mental Health Awareness Month, Addresses a Glaring Need for Mental Health Education and Dialogue for Athletes Who Identify as Women

BOISE, Idaho, May 28, 2024 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- The Iron Butterfly, an organization dedicated to advancing mental health in women's sports, launched a first-of-its-kind website that aggregates key resources to learn more about ? and to engage in dialogue regarding ? the unique pressures that women athletes encounter.

"Female athletes need a supportive space where they can connect and share their experiences, empowering them to overcome these challenges and excel both on and off the field."

According to a December 2023 NCAA report on student-athlete mental health, 35 percent of women's sports participants feel mentally exhausted, and 29 percent feel overwhelming anxiety. More than four in ten feel overwhelmed by all they have to do, and almost one in ten say they feel so depressed it is difficult to function. In every case ? across Division I, II and III ? the percentages are higher in women's sports versus men's sports.

"Navigating the competitive sports environment is particularly challenging for female athletes, who must contend with intense pressures, external expectations and unique stressors," said Dr. Hillary Cauthen, PsyD, CMPC, AASP member and owner of Texas Optimal Performance & Psychological Services. "As a clinical sport psychologist, I understand how balancing performance demands with personal well-being often leaves little room for addressing mental health. Female athletes need a supportive space where they can connect and share their experiences, empowering them to overcome these challenges and excel both on and off the field."

"Taking part in sports has been one of the of the greatest joys in my life because it gives you so many things you have to overcome," said Sydney Garber, founder and president of The Iron Butterfly. "I kicked off this initiative to raise awareness about some of the specific mental health obstacles that come into play as a participant in women's sports, and to give people like me a place where they can come together and share stories, learn, and feel supported by others who are taking part in a similar journey."

The launch of The Iron Butterfly website (https://iron-butterfly.org) coincides with Mental Health Awareness Month, which takes place during the month of May each year.

About The Iron Butterfly:

Borrowed from a term for strong Southern women, The Iron Butterfly symbolizes athletes that identify as women who must balance charm and grace with grit and toughness. The organization is specifically dedicated to advancing mental health in women's sports. It unites third-party resources on this subject so athletes can holistically learn more about the unique set of pressures they must overcome, and it provides a safe place to engage with others in discussion on related topics for better mental health. To learn more, visit The Iron Butterfly website, Instagram page, X, or our blog.

Media Contact

Joe Garber, Kainos Consulting, 1 (208) 614-4617, [email protected]

SOURCE The Iron Butterfly

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