The diagram above indicates those areas of the brain responsible for
'vital' functions. Each area can be adversely affected by injury, illness, disease or drug &/or
alcohol abuse. Millions of neurons make up each of these regions with activity generated by neurotransmitters
passing electrical signals from one to another and to muscles, glands and other organs of the body.
Damage to any area of the brain is often irreversible and can result in lifelong
problems; physically, psychologically & socially.
It is imperative that you care for your brain by considering aspects
of your life that might have a detrimental effect upon it. You might not be aware of its existence, yet every
function of your very being whilst living & breathing is connected to that which takes place 'between your
Take time to gain a basic understanding of the brain & its
functions. It's well worth the effort.
Most athletes and more particularly Rugby league players, have a
generally accurate & sound comprehension of certain physiological characteristics such as muscles, ligaments,
cartilages and so on; largely due to the injuries often sustained in one's career. It could be considered a
'need to know' exercise.
When interviewed they can explain quite adequately details relating
to their cruciate ligament surgery or the problems associated with medial ligament damage. A torn hamstring or
snapped achilles tendon, dislocation & fractures are also fairly well understood, particularly the progress of
recovery & rehabilitation.
This understanding is obviously essential to the player personally
& professionally, but also the club, family etc.
These same principles of 'need to understand' should
also be applied to the brain and mechanisms of function. Many a behavioural, emotional or psychological problem can
be aided in recovery by a similar attempt to gain the necessary knowledge; even if it is somewhat
The player is guided by their surgeon or physician with respect to
prognosis, rehabilitation and time frames for return to 'action' on the field. So too should the
player be guided by the appropriate professional in relation to those aspects regarding 'Mental
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