US Open To Launch “Quiet Rooms” Mental Health Initiative

Just days before the start of the season’s last Grand Slam in New York, The United States Tennis Association has announced that “quiet rooms” will be available to players as part of the tournament’s medical services.

The purpose of the “quiet rooms” is to assist the players with the strain a major tournament can have on mental health.

“The issue of mental health awareness has been brought to the forefront over the course of the global pandemic, as many individuals, players included, have struggled with the stresses and emotions that have come as a result of COVID-19,” read a statement by USTA Chief Executive Stacey Allaster.

“Together with the multi-dimensional pressures within professional sport, this new reality highlighted the need to provide additional resources to support all aspects of athletes’ health, including their mental health and wellbeing.”

“We look forward to seeing how the initiatives implemented at this year’s tournament, and in the coming months, make an impact on player wellbeing, and will continue to look for ways to improve and adapt as we move forward.”

Awareness of mental health has been raised recently after highly-publicized issues experienced by women’s tennis star Naomi Osaka.

The Japanese player has spoken out about her mental health and her issues with depression and anxiety during a series of events in the past months.

Earlier this year, the four-time Grand Slam champion withdrew from the French open after being fined for not speaking to the media.

As a reason for avoiding the press conferences, she said that speaking to the press causes her ‘huge anxiety’.

Osaka took some time away from the tour until July, when she competed in the Tokyo Olympics.

Osaka won the US Open in 2018 and 2020 and is among the top favorites to win it again.