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17 Responses so far.

  1. mike corbett says:

    This is the article I was talking to you about

  2. M says:

    Being a family that is very involved in our daughter’s softball league, unfortunately we witness this every season. My husband is a coach and is always talking about this exact subject. We recently had a couple of College Coaches facilitate our Softball League’s clinics, their message was also similar. Their message was “Make sure that you end the practices on a fun note so that the players want to return.” Also, they have found that when coaching college players , the ones that started Travel or Club too early were burnt out by the time they hit college. Their KIDS, Let them be KIDS!!!!!!

  3. Conrad Bobiwash says:

    Sports policies fail to enforce that teaching confidence in sports skills is the foundation to life success.
    There are athletes and that’s exactly what they are,they will be traded and sold like live stock. Individuals make choices,you persue the dream or you step aside and take your skills from the game to make a better life for you and others.
    Once you are out,don’t look back,build a better world realign your goals and continue with success that meets your values.
    It is you ,not coaches or fans,that needs to take of yourself.
    I have watched college athletes leave hockey and start to live and be gainfully employed and very satisfied.

  4. […] Talent Selection Instead of Talent Development […]

  5. […] de fazer, o que procuramos, então, quando tentamos identificar um talento? O autor norte-americano John O’Sullivan dá parte da resposta num dos seus artigos. Citando um estudo de Piotr Unierzyski com uma […]

  6. Matt says:

    You nailed it. There are many things wrong with youth sports and most of them are the parents and coaches forgetting it is about the kids. Don’t get too carried away with worrying about creating elite athletes in the first place. Give kids the foundation and the opportunity to create it their own way!

  7. Susan Tabas Tepper says:

    Read this and reread it and pass it on. So true. Let the kids have fun again.

  8. […] Our Biggest Mistake: Talent Selection Instead of Talent Identification […]

  9. Maggie Tohme says:

    This by far the best sport related article I’ve ever read. Thank you

  10. Kaila says:

    I’m a late teen competitive athlete who plays regional level but I haven’t been picked at any higher honours. I train hard and ended up the 2nd fittest last year and haven’t had the luxury of being coached by an experienced one unlike some players. As a result of talent selection our country has been losing to our rival for sometime now. I aim to play pro but it seems I lack something but I don’t know what. Perhaps they could teach it to me instead?

    article is gold

  11. John Roy says:

    Superb article, could have been written about my youngest son; he fortunately has a coach who is outstanding at identifying talent and has encouraged and nurtured him for over 10 years. He is now nearly 19 and has national gold medals in two sports and has represented his country. But two years ago he was an also-ran: small, average strength, but his wonderful coach told him to work on his technique and let growth take care of the rest. He finally started to grow at 16 and is now taller than me. Immensely strong, yet wiry, he leaves for dead the kids who once wiped the floor with him for years on end. He devoted himself to technique, the others relied on strength. Eventually he had both.
    So, to parents of keen small children: don’t worry about placings or medals. Technique, technique technique. Let the strength come in its own time.

  12. N V says:

    Very well spotted difference between talent selection and identification. I resonate strongly with your view on training large numbers of athletes. It’s for this reason that I should also point some things out:

    1. Like you rightly said, talent identification is an art – a very complex one! I think it’s nearly impossible to predict how well an athlete will perform, even in his next race or his next game. Therein lies the issue with the concept of talent identification: is it truly as accurate as we think it is? Are we sure that as coaches, it was our talent identification skills that allowed us to pick that star athlete? Or is this simply the result of having trained a large number of athletes? It is a tough question to answer, and research needs to be done in this area before one may credibly educate a large body of coaches on the subject of talent identification.

    2. I fully agree that cutting candidates at a later stage and training more of them would definitely help to identify the truly brilliant ones. However, I do feel that winning is not the only motive for coaches who cut players early. Resource and time constraints deserve more attention in the analysis on this issue. Let’s not forget that at one point (or at some point), we too were (or will be) made to put forth a few names for focused training in view of resource and time constraints.

    Nevertheless, I’m glad that you wrote this article and suggested several possible solutions to the problem. I only hope that greater understanding into talent identification can be built and promulgated throughout the coaching word. Cheers.

  13. […] de fazer, o que procuramos, então, quando tentamos identificar um talento? O autor norte-americano John O’Sullivan dá parte da resposta num dos seus artigos. Citando um estudo de Piotr Unierzyski com uma […]

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