The Sports Gene

The Sports Gene

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  • Central Idea- Genes have a huge play in your skill.
  • One day, Thomas was boasting about his slam dunking prowess during lunch.  Carlos Mattis, Lindenwood's top high jumper, had enough with Thomas' lips.  He bet Thomas that he wouldn't be able to clear 6'6" in a high jump competition.
  • Bet.
  • All talk.
  • Thomas met up with Mattis at the field house.  Mattis was waiting for Thomas to fail.  To Mattis' amazement, Thomas cleared 6'6" and 6'8" easily, without a semblance of graceful high-jump technique.
  • Woah.
  • "All talk".
  • Two days later, Thomas showed up to the track meet.  Thomas cleared 6'8.25", qualifying for the National Championships.  Later on that day, he cleared 7'0.25".  On Thomas' 7th attempt, he cleared 7'3.25".  Coach Lohr forced Thomas to stop.
  • Stop, you might get hurt.
  • Easy.
  • 2 months later, Thomas placed 4th in a world-class field against professional jumpers. After 8 months of legitimate high-jump training, Thomas traveled to Osaka for the World Championships.
  • 4th place, not so bad :)
  • Thomas easily advanced to the finals, as did Stefan Holmes. Thomas was given the title of the "Unknown Quantity". Both Thomas and Holmes advanced to the final round facing against each other. At the end Thomas won while Holmes lost.
  • UGH, WHY ?
  • "Unknown Quantity"
  • Masaki Ishikawa said that Thomas was gifted with a giant's Achilles tendon. Ishikawa wouldn't suggest that the sole secret to the jumping success of Holmes and Thomas is in the tendon. But it helps explains how two amazing jumpers met at the same place. One that trained for 20 years and one that trained for less than 1 year.
  • WOW!
  • "Thomas hasn't improved one centimeter in the six years since he entered the professional circuit. He's debuted on top and hasn't progressed since. He seems to contradict the deliberate practice framework in all directions."
  • Achilles Tendon- The longer and stiffer the tendon, the higher you'll jump.
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