Study: Watching old games of footy a boon to mental health

Like so much in society today, professional sport is overwhelmingly preoccupied with the now and the next (“one week at a time” “you’re only as good as your last game”). However, nostalgia is a powerful drug and a recent study has shown indulging in it may have some seriously positive effects on mental health, stimulating memory recollection and emotional responses that provide a bulwark to cognitive decline in dementia & enhance general mental well-being.


So Almanackers, like the latest study linking dark chocolate or red wine to improved physical health outcomes, this provides us with a palatable activity that many of us have indulged in before.


What would be your nominated game (or games) of years past for your own personal mental health? Let us know!




  1. Shane John Backx says

    Round 11 1972 Queens Birthday clash Collingwood vs Essendon. Tuddy’s first game back at Collingwood as Capt Coach of Essendon

  2. Phillip Dimitriadis says

    Round 6, 1981. Pies thumped Carton at Princes Park to take top spot, with Daicos kicking 7. My 11 year old soul was singing that day more than any other I could remember.

  3. The Saints’ 2009 regular-season victory over Geelong when both teams were like 13-0. Great salve for the soul in this lean year. I have the game on DVD as I won it for winning a pre-game trivia contest during a Grand Final watching party at Timothy O’Toole’s Irish pub in downtown Chicago. Many happy memories of that night— until the end.

  4. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Sonny Morey’s 200th game, a win at the Bay a year after conceding 49 goals to the Tigers.

    Did the study say anything about overdosing?

  5. I concur wholeheartedly with this contention. For black and white lovers here’s something I prepared earlier – links to about 270 matches stretching right back to 1910!

  6. Jarrod_L says

    This one stands out, watching Cogs and Bowdo tear apart the Old Dark Navies was amazing. Haven’t seen a first half quite like it before or since from the Tigers.

  7. Stainless says

    The 1967 Grand Final.

    Even at 51 years and in primitive B&W, no analysis or slo-mo, it’s great for the soul (for all except Geelong fans) and a wonderful reminder of why we love this game.

    And as the AFL lurches, worryingly, towards all sorts of experimental rule changes, it’s a very good illustration of how sensible, decisive application of the current rules is all that’s needed to keep the game open and flowing.

  8. Joe De Petro says

    Just before last year’s finals, during the bye weekend, I was at a loose end so I pulled out by DVDs of the 1967 and 1969 Grand Finals and watched both. As September unfolded, I followed up by watching 1973, 1974 and 1980. It was like an old-fashioned, month long footy marathon.

    Now I have six Grand Finals to watch this September.

    Happy days!

  9. Chances are that watching your favourite old games will make you even more depressed – for what you have lost and what you now have in its place.

  10. Has to be the Montmorency v Templestowe U16 grand final in 1979. Anyone got it on tape?

Leave a Comment