Melbourne Rebels rookie Reece Hodge is acutely aware of social media perils but it’s the bright side he wants to focus on.
While much is made of the negative potential of social media, especially inadvertent geotagging of posts, Hodge said the ability to use it for good put athletes in a unique position.
“It’s not only the negatives but how you can spread positive messages and grow the game of rugby,” he said.
“You can use it to promote awareness of charities or help out the club with trying to spread interest in memberships.”
In regards to the dangers of social media, Hodge said the general rule was “if you don’t want your mum or grandma or the club to see it, it shouldn’t be online.
“It’s about ensuring everything is thought through and you’re posting in a rational state of mind,” he said.
At the RUPA rookies induction camp, along with all first-year Super Rugby and Aussie Sevens players, Hodge said he was grateful to be learning some critical lessons now on everything ranging from financial planning to cyber security.
The 21-year-old said discussing ways to invest money was a valuable discussion and one some of his older Rebels teammates wish they had when they were starting out.
“We’re pretty lucky in that a lot of other jobs wouldn’t be able to provide detail to that degree,” he said.
“I just want to make the most of it (the lessons).
“Some of the senior players down at the Rebels were saying they wish they’d gotten it sorted at the start.”
Hodge will have a qualification to lean on outside of football, with one year left in a physiotherapy degree.
“That’s something good to have in the background and hopefully I’ll get it finished over the next couple of years,” he said.
“I’m not 100 per cent it’s exactly what I want to do but it’s a good qualification and I’ll just keep learning from the experiences and mistakes of others and see what's the best fit.”