CSPPA partners with North for mental health program
The Danish team is the first participant of a program that will be expanded to all players "in the near future".
The Counter-Strike Professional Players' Association (CSPPA) and North have entered into a partnership that will see the Danish team's members receive clinical psychological treatment and have access to an educational program on player mental health, both parties announced on Tuesday.
North's players will have 24/7 access to a dedicated clinical psychologist through an online service called We.Care, and will undergo an online training program to help them "identify the body’s stress signals as well as a possible post-treatment program," according to the CSPPA.
The partnership will run for a two-month trial period, after which the two parties will convene to assess the scope of the program. While North are the only team that will take part in the project, the CSPPA plans to extend its mental health plans to all members "in the near future".
"Over the last couple of years, players have experienced increased pressure," North captain Mathias "MSL" Lauridsen said in a statement. "Young and old players alike are partaking in more and more tournaments, which can be stressful at times. We have seen some of the world’s best experience this.
"Personally, I don’t want that to happen to me or any other players, so I think this project can help how we prepare and deal with everything in a professional and confidential environment."
The announcement comes just a week after the CSPPA launched a research project with Dr Phil Birch and Ben Sharpe of the University of Chichester, and with Dr Matt Smith of the University of Winchester with a view to understanding the factors influencing mental health in esports, specifically in CS:GO.
North are currently down to just four players following the departure of Markus "Kjaerbye" Kjærbye, who was on Tuesday unveiled as FaZe's new player. The 22-year-old spent the last two months of his tenure with the Danish team on the bench due to medical reasons after complaining of abdominal pains, breathing problems and chest cramps.