The youth sport talent illusion: How we confuse early-maturers with good athletes

Which of the young footballers running up and down the field every Saturday morning will become future stars? No one can tell. But it's a good bet that some of them are already performing well above the level of their peers and are considered as top prospects for future stardom. These athletes already seem to have what it takes to move up in the sport and in the current youth sport culture these precocious youngsters are the ones who will receive more coaching, more encouragement, and more family support than others who seem less talented. Read more...


Naturalized footballers: Is it really the Malaysian national team if the players aren't Malaysian?

The Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) seems to have thrown in the towel on developing the sport in Malaysia. Exhibit A is the idea floated late last month of using naturalized players to bolster national team performance. Harimau Malaysia currently resides near the bottom of the FIFA rankings with few prospects for improvement. It is hoped that placing a few naturalized players in the squad will help turn this around. But at what cost? Read more...


The tip of the iceberg: What are we seeing when we watch elite sport performances?

In his book Bounce, Matthew Syed explains that the so-called talent we see in high performers is a result of lots of practice; deliberate practice in the jargon of expertise research. Although the definition of talent can be nuanced to mean different things it's typically defined as something we're born with, an innate gift one has that others don't. Read more...


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