NRL great Greg Inglis & Goanna get deadly on mental health

  • Published December 18, 2023

Most would assume grand finals or State of Origin clashes would have been Indigenous NRL great Greg Inglis’ biggest challenges. But the versatile South Sydney star has recently opened up about dealing with a more personal hurdle – mental health - and why he formed the Sydney-based Goanna Academy to help others struggling.

“GI” shared some of his vision for the Goanna Academy, Australia’s first Indigenous-owned mental health education provider, with HSU members as a guest speaker at the HSU-sponsored Mental Health Week event at Bathurst in November.

The Goanna Academy was established in 2020 and is Inglis’ first move post-footy, showing his commitment to giving back to the community and helping others with their mental health.

The retired South Sydney great battled his own demons throughout his career and was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder in 2019. He said improving mental health outcomes for all Australians was vital.

“Being able to talk about mental health is something I’m passionate about.”

What I’ve been through will not go away, but talking about my struggles, helps. I hope that something I have said, helps you and let you know that you are not alone.”

He said Goanna gave him the chance to share his own personal journey and own battles with mental illness in an effort to inspire and influence others - especially those from the Indigenous community.

“I want the participants to become ‘champions’… and support others who may be suffering,” he said.

As part of the Bathurst mental health event, the Rabbitohs and Storm legend met with HSU members serving as Aboriginal health trainees at the Bathurst mental health unit along with HSU councillor Bryan Billington.