Month: November 2012

A Winning Habit

I might be a tad biased, given that my wife and I are alums, but there’s something absolutely insane about the fact that Notre Dame’s football team will be playing for the national championship in a month. Because it wasn’t supposed to happen. For the past two decades the most consistent thing about ND football …

Thanksgiving Test

The danger of writing about skill is that occasionally someone asks you to put your money where your mouth is.
That someone happens to be my lovely wife, Jen. The ask? To cook the Thanksgiving turkey.
After all, she said, cooking a turkey is just another skill, like hitting a tennis ball or learning a language. Plus, …

The One Word You Should Avoid Using

If you were to survey a million parents, coaches, and teachers about their biggest barrier to improving performance, most would mention motivation.
Because while the science of talent has made many advances in recent years, motivation remains an area of profound mystery. How does it start? Why does it vanish? How do we sustain it in …

The Power of Ownership

I love this video. It’s about a group of Thai kids who wanted to play soccer, but who didn’t have space in their coastal village — so they built a small, floating soccer field.
It’s a parable about an increasingly rare quality in our world: ownership. These kids succeeded not because they were provided with facilities, …


Big news! The Secret Race, which I wrote with Tyler Hamilton, just got nominated for the GoodReads Choice Award for Nonfiction Book of the Year. The voting is this week — so click here and have your vote counted.  This is the semi-final round; voting goes through November 18th. If we make the final, there’s …

How to Boost Awareness

I was chatting recently with Nate Sanderson, a top Iowa high school girls’ basketball coach. The subject turned to favorite pieces of advice. I expected to hear him start talking about lay-up drills and passing technique. But I didn’t. Instead, he said this:
Know where you are, and know where you’re supposed to be.
That’s it.
Know where …

The Power of MicroPractice: Why 5 Minutes Makes a Big Difference

A Must-See Movie

“Inspirational” is a dangerously overused word. But it’s the only word to describe “Brooklyn Castle,” a new documentary that tells the story of a tiny, unlikely talent hotbed: a middle-school chess team from Brooklyn, NY.
What I love is that this film doesn’t settle for the easy, soft-focus portrait. It shows exactly how hard the the …

One Quick Way to Spot a Good Coach