Thursday, November 05, 2009

Of sports and sportspersons

I read this from Prem Panickers blog and it set me thinking...The link is about Agassis new book etc., but it is also about Agassi and how he was pushed by his dad (pushed being an understatement - you might want to read either the link or the book) in the formative years.

This will probably be a multi part post as I try to wrestle with my thought process. But one of the first questions that comes to my mind - can anyone reach the pinnacle of sport without being super focussed? Think Abhinav Bindra who trains at his own private range for hours. Think Saina Nehwal who trains so hard she has no friends. And the Abhinavs and the Agassis are the survival bias candidates - the guys who made it big. Many others dont...

Here are some of the questions, I am wrestling with...

Can someone become a top class sportsperson without spending all those hours and sacrifices? (clearly no).
How much of this becoming a top class sportsperson is about self motivation and how much of it is about being pushed (by someone - coach, parent)
At what point does the pushing become self motivation and vice versa?
How self motivated can you be at age 7 or 10 or 13? Is that self motivation? Really? Or is it something else being explained as self motivation?

I remember my better half saying, how in her school days, the poor guys always ran the best. They, in many cases, were running away from their "hard life". This was their potential passport to success or to put it in a different way, training helped them get their mind away from their daily hardships.

(I recall reading something similar about Rajyavardhan Rathores army background in an interview where somebody asked him about stress or something. Does someone have a link to that?)

Initial thoughts I hope to sort better over the next few days...

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