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What is the secret of talent? How do we unlock it? In this groundbreaking work, journalist and New York Times bestselling author Daniel Coyle provides parents, teachers, coaches, businesspeople—and everyone else—with tools they can use to maximize potential in themselves and others.

Whether you’re coaching soccer or teaching a child to play the piano, writing a novel or trying to improve your golf swing, this revolutionary book shows you how to grow talent by tapping into a newly discovered brain mechanism.

Drawing on cutting-edge neurology and firsthand research gathered on journeys to nine of the world’s talent hotbeds—from the baseball fields of the Caribbean to a classical-music academy in upstate New York—Coyle identifies the three key elements that will allow you to develop your gifts and optimize your performance in sports, art, music, math, or just about anything.

• Deep Practice--Everyone knows that practice is a key to success. What everyone doesn’t know is that specific kinds of practice can increase skill up to ten times faster than conventional practice.

• Ignition--We all need a little motivation to get started. But what separates truly high achievers from the rest of the pack? A higher level of commitment—call it passion—born out of our deepest unconscious desires and triggered by certain primal cues. Understanding how these signals work can help you ignite passion and catalyze skill development.

• Master Coaching--What are the secrets of the world’s most effective teachers, trainers, and coaches? Discover the four virtues that enable these “talent whisperers” to fuel passion, inspire deep practice, and bring out the best in their students.

These three elements work together within your brain to form myelin, a microscopic neural substance that adds vast amounts of speed and accuracy to your movements and thoughts. Scientists have discovered that myelin might just be the holy grail: the foundation of all forms of greatness, from Michelangelo’s to Michael Jordan’s. The good news about myelin is that it isn’t fixed at birth; to the contrary, it grows, and like anything that grows, it can be cultivated and nourished.

Combining revelatory analysis with illuminating examples of regular people who have achieved greatness, this book will not only change the way you think about talent, but equip you to reach your own highest potential.

Review

"I only wish I''d never before used the words ''breakthrough'' or ''breathtaking'' or ''magisterial'' or ''stunning achievement'' or ''your world will never be the same after you read this book.'' Then I could be using them for the first and only time as I describe my reaction to Daniel Coyle''s The Talent Code. I am even willing to ''guarantee'' that you will not read a more important and useful book in 2009, or pretty much any other year. And if all that''s not enough, it''s also ''a helluva good read.''"—Tom Peters, author of In Search of Excellence

"This is a remarkable—even inspiring—book. Daniel Coyle has woven observations from brain research, behavioral research, and real-world training into a conceptual tapestry of genuine importance. What emerges is both a testament to the remarkable potential we all have to learn and perform and an indictment of any idea that our individual capacities and limitations are fixed at birth."—Dr. Robert Bjork, Distinguished Professor and Chair of Psychology, UCLA

About the Author

Daniel Coyle is the author of the New York Times bestseller Lance Armstrong’s War and Hardball: A Season in the Projects, and is a contributing editor for Outside magazine. He lives with his wife and four children in Homer, Alaska, where he coaches a rapidly improving Little League team.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

IntroductionThe Girl Who Did a Month''s Worth of Practice in Six MinutesEvery journey begins with questions, and here are three: How does a penniless Russian tennis club with one indoor court create more top-twenty women players than the entire United States? How does a humble storefront music school in Dallas, Texas, produce Jessica Simpson, Demi Lovato, and a succession of pop music phenoms? How does a poor, scantily educated British family in a remote village turn out three world-class writers? Talent hotbeds are mysterious places, and the most mysterious thing about them is that they bloom without warning. The first baseball players from the tiny island of the Dominican Republic arrived in the major leagues in the 1950s; they now account for one in nine big-league players. The first South Korean woman golfer won a Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) tournament in 1998; now there are fortyfive on the LPGA Tour, including eight of the top twenty money winners. In 1991 there was only one Chinese entry in the Van Cliburn piano competition; the most recent competition featured eight, a proportional leap reflected in top symphony orchestras around the world. Media coverage tends to treat each hotbed as a singular phenomenon, but in truth they are all part of a larger, older pattern. Consider the composers of nineteenth-century Vienna, the writers of Shakespearean England, or the artists of the Italian Renaissance, during which the sleepy city of Florence, population 70,000, suddenly produced an explosion of genius that has never been seen before or since. In each case, the identical questions echo: Where does this extraordinary talent come from? How does it grow? The answer could begin with a remarkable piece of video showing a freckle-faced thirteen-year-old girl named Clarissa. Clarissa (not her real name) was part of a study by Australian music psychologists Gary McPherson and James Renwick that tracked her progress at the clarinet for several years. Officially, the video''s title is shorterclarissa3.mov, but it should have been called The Girl Who Did a Month''s Worth of Practice in Six Minutes. On screen, Clarissa does not look particularly talented. She wears a blue hooded sweatshirt, gym shorts, and an expression of sleepy indifference. In fact, until the six minutes captured on the video, Clarissa had been classified as a musical mediocrity. According to McPherson''s aptitude tests and the testimony of her teacher, her parents, and herself, Clarissa possessed no musical gifts. She lacked a good ear; her sense of rhythm was average, her motivation subpar. (In the study''s written section, she marked “because I''m supposed to” as her strongest reason for practicing.) Nonetheless, Clarissa had become famous in music-science circles. Because on an average morning McPherson''s camera captured this average kid doing something distinctly un-average. In five minutes and fifty-four seconds, she accelerated her learning speed by ten times, according to McPherson''s calculations. What was more, she didn''t even notice. McPherson sets up the clip for us: It''s morning, Clarissa''s customary time for practice, a day after her weekly lesson. She is working on a new song entitled “Golden Wedding,” a 1941 tune by jazz clarinetist Woody Herman. She''s listened to the song a few times. She likes it. Now she''s going to try to play it. Clarissa draws a breath and plays two notes. Then she stops. She pulls the clarinet from her lips and stares at the paper. Her eyes narrow. She plays seven notes, the song''s opening phrase. She misses the last note and immediately stops, fairly jerking the clarinet from her lips. She squints again at the music and sings the phrase softly. “Dah dah dum dah,” she says. She starts over and plays the riff from the beginning, making it a few notes farther into the song this time, missing the last note, backtracking, patching in the fix. The opening is beginning to snap together-the notes have verve and feeling. When she''s finished with this phrase, she stops again for six long seconds, seeming to replay it in her mind, fingering the clarinet as she thinks. She leans forward, takes a breath, and starts again. It sounds pretty bad. It''s not music; it''s a broken-up, fitful, slow-motion batch of notes riddled with stops and misses. Common sense would lead us to believe that Clarissa is failing. But in this case common sense would be dead wrong. “This is amazing stuff,” McPherson says. “Every time I watch this, I see new things, incredibly subtle, powerful things. This is how a professional musician would practice on Wednesday for a Saturday performance.” On screen Clarissa leans into the sheet music, puzzling out a G-sharp that she ''s never played before. She looks at her hand, then at the music, then at her hand again. She hums the riff. Clarissa''s posture is tilted forward; she looks as though she is walking into a chilly wind; her sweetly freckled face tightens into a squint. She plays the phrase again and again. Each time she adds a layer of spirit, rhythm, swing. “Look at that!” McPherson says. “She ''s got a blueprint in her mind she ''s constantly comparing herself to. She ''s working in phrases, complete thoughts. She ''s not ignoring errors, she''s hearing them, fixing them. She ''s fitting small parts into the whole, drawing the lens in and out all the time, scaffolding herself to a higher level.” This is not ordinary practice. This is something else: a highly targeted, error-focused process. Something is growing, being built. The song begins to emerge, and with it, a new quality within Clarissa. The video rolls on. After practicing “Golden Wedding,” Clarissa goes on to work on her next piece, “The Blue Danube.” But this time she plays it in one go, without stopping. Absent of jarring stops, the tune tumbles out in tuneful, recognizable form, albeit with the occasional squeak. McPherson groans.“She just plays it, like she ''s on a moving sidewalk,” he says. “It''s completely awful. She''s not thinking, not learning, not building, just wasting time. She goes from worse than normal to brilliant and then back again, and she has no idea she ''s doing it.” After a few moments McPherson can''t take it anymore. He rewinds to watch Clarissa practice “Golden Wedding” again. He wants to watch it for the same reason I do. This is not a picture of talent created by genes; it''s something far more interesting. It is six minutes of an average person entering a magically productive zone, one where more skill is created with each passing second. “Good God,” McPherson says wistfully. “If somebody could bottle this, it''d be worth millions.” This book is about a simple idea: Clarissa and the talent hotbeds are doing the same thing. They have tapped into a neurological mechanism in which certain patterns of targeted practice build skill. Without realizing it, they have entered a zone of accelerated learning that, while it can''t quite be bottled, can be accessed by those who know how. In short, they''ve cracked the talent code. The talent code is built on revolutionary scientific discoveries involving a neural insulator called myelin, which some neurologists now consider to be the holy grail of acquiring skill. Here ''s why. Every human skill, whether it''s playing baseball or playing Bach, is created by chains of nerve fibers carrying a tiny electrical impulse-basically, a signal traveling through a circuit. Myelin''s vital role is to wrap those nerve fibers the same way that rubber insulation wraps a copper wire, making the signal stronger and faster by preventing the electrical impulses from leaking out. When we fire our circuits in the right way-when we practice swinging that bat or playing that note-our myelin responds by wrapping layers of insulation around that neural circuit, each new layer adding a bit more skill and speed. The thicker the myelin gets, the better it insulates, and the faster and more accurate our movements and thoughts become. Myelin is important for several reasons. It''s universal: everyone can grow it, most swiftly during childhood but also throughout life. It''s indiscriminate: its growth enables all manner of skills, mental and physical. It''s imperceptible: we can''t see it or feel it, and we can sense its increase only by its magical-seeming effects. Most of all, however, myelin is important because it provides us with a vivid new model for understanding skill. Skill is a cellular insulation that wraps neural circuits and that grows in response to certain signals. The more time and energy you put into the right kind of practice-the longer you stay in the Clarissa zone, firing the right signals through your circuits-the more skill you get, or, to put it a slightly different way, the more myelin you earn. All skill acquisitions, and therefore all talent hotbeds, operate on the same principles of action, no matter how different they may appear to us. As Dr. George Bartzokis, a UCLA neurologist and myelin researcher, put it, “All skills, all language, all music, all movements, are made of living circuits, and all circuits grow according to certain rules.” In the coming pages we ''ll see those rules in action by visiting the world''s best soccer players, bank robbers, violinists, fighter pilots, artists, and skateboarders. We ''ll explore some surprising talent hotbeds that are succeeding for reasons that even their inhabitants cannot guess. We ''ll meet an assortment of scientists, coaches, teachers, and talent researchers who are discovering new tools for acquiring skill. Above all, we ''ll explore specific ways in which these tools can make a difference in maximizing the potential in our own lives and the lives of those around us. The idea that all skills grow by the same cellular mechanism seems strange and surprising because the skills are so dazzlingly varied. But then again, all of this planet''s variety is built from shared, adaptive mechanisms; evolution could have it no other way. Redwoods differ from roses but both grow through photosynthesis. Elephants differ from amoebas but both use the same cellular mechanism to convert food into energy. Tennis players, singers, and painters don''t seem to have much in common but they all get better by gradually improving timing and speed and accuracy, by honing neural circuitry, by obeying the rules of the talent code-in short, by growing more myelin. This book is divided into three parts-deep practice, ignition, and master coaching-which correspond to the three basic elements of the talent code. Each element is useful on its own, but their convergence is the key to creating skill. Remove one, and the process slows. Combine them, even for six minutes, and things begin to change.

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Cmg
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
The book to read
Reviewed in the United States on April 25, 2019
If you have a desire to become better at an activity, this is the book to read. This includes all manners of human endeavors, i.e, musicians, sports, teachers. The first half of the book has given me knowledge on how to make the most of the time I have to practice the... See more
If you have a desire to become better at an activity, this is the book to read. This includes all manners of human endeavors, i.e, musicians, sports, teachers. The first half of the book has given me knowledge on how to make the most of the time I have to practice the clarinet - and actually improve! The book is written for young people and their teachers and coaches. However, I have found that the techniques are working for me also, even though I am 74. Yes, it is probably harder but I am making progress. Actually, no matter how old you are, you can presue a desire you had no time for as a young person, if you are willing to work at it.

I the one negative for me in the book was the huge amount of time spent on sports. I am not a sports fan as t all. Part of the time I had no idea what he was talking about. However, if you are into sports, you probably will love this book.
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Alan L. Chase
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Greatness Isn''t Born - It''s Grown
Reviewed in the United States on March 22, 2017
This brilliantly written book is one of the most impactful I have read this year. Author Daniel Coyle has done an outstanding job of taking research into myelin, a substance that insulates nerve cells, and turning that scientific breakthrough knowledge into a prescription... See more
This brilliantly written book is one of the most impactful I have read this year. Author Daniel Coyle has done an outstanding job of taking research into myelin, a substance that insulates nerve cells, and turning that scientific breakthrough knowledge into a prescription for achieving greatness in a variety of fields, from music to athletics to business.

Using powerful case studies, Coyle has identified three distinct key elements that determine how individuals achieve greatness: Deep Practice, Ignition, and Master Coaching.

Deep Practice involves short burst of energy - perfecting, identifying errors, repeating. Each time an individual - violinist, tennis player, soccer player - engages in this kind of Deep Practice, the nervous system generates new layers of myelin to further insulate and streamline the flow of electrical energy within neural synapses.

In order for an individual to have the motivation, persistence, and determination to engage in this level of Deep Practice, there needs to have been an Ignition event. In the case of Korean women who now dominate the LPGA, the igniting event was Se Ri Pak winning the McDonald''s LPGA Championship in 1998, and becoming a visible symbol and role model for young Korean girls. Five years later - enough time for Deep Practice to have made a significant difference - Korean women began to dominate women''s golf.

The third key element is Master Coaching.. Mr. Coyle calls these master teachers "The Talent Whisperers." Common traits are patience, nurturing spirit and the ability to use years of observation and pattern recognition to know just the right word to say to encourage and motivate the person being coached. IConic UCLA coach John Wooden is cited as a prototype for this kind of Master Coach.

The implications of these three key elements that lead to greatness are far reaching. They can be applied to the realm of parenting, teaching, coaching, and business leadership. This is a MUST READ book for anyone who aspires to greatness or to lead others in achieving greatness.
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Mike Earl
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
You''re not fated to be mediocre
Reviewed in the United States on July 16, 2014
Coyle brings an empowering, exciting message to us: that we can grow our own greatness. That our skills are not fixed; they''re not inherited or inherent inside of our DNA. I can''t help but wish my parents had known the concepts of this book when I struggled with my... See more
Coyle brings an empowering, exciting message to us: that we can grow our own greatness. That our skills are not fixed; they''re not inherited or inherent inside of our DNA. I can''t help but wish my parents had known the concepts of this book when I struggled with my baseball swing in 8th grade. But, I''m thankful to have this message known to me as a 31-year old -- both for my own growth of talent, and for how I will raise my future children.

After writing a draft of this glowing review, I decided to read the most helpful critical review of the book, as penned by Ronald Forbes. In many ways, his review was accurate, and also somewhat persuasive. In light of his review, I have tempered my own review and rating, down from 5 stars to 4 stars. To summarize, Forbes rightly points out that Coyle''s book is more "pop journalism" (which I have no problem with...it helps keep this book interesting, and from being bogged down in scientific jargon), and he says the book''s claims are nothing new. But if an author can present old ideas in a fresh way that can help us change our behaviors, then he should be commended for it!

This is the kind of book that you cannot help telling your friends and family about. Over the several weeks during which I read this book, I brought aspects of the book up in at least half a dozen conversations. It''s a fun book. And you learn a lot.

I''m not skilled in science, so I''m not going to try to summarize what the heck myelin is. Basically, it''s stuff in your brain that grows as you develop skill in ANY given area of life. So, Coyle tries to help us explain how to grow more myelin in our brains.

Coyle''s three keys to growing talent:

1) Deep Practice - when I go out and play 18 holes, this is about as far from deep practice as you can get. Why? Because deep practice is all about fixing mistakes. You can do that on the driving range or the putting green, but not on the course (well, not easily, anyway). Think about it: how much time does the average golfer spend playing vs. practicing? 5-to-1? 10-to-1? Or any other sport or skill, for that matter.

The concept of deep practice is not about practicing for countless hours each day; instead, most of the talent hotbeds profiled in the book had pupils training less than e hours per day. But the 3 hours of practice at these hotbeds has exponentially greater yield than regular practice.

Deep practice is about struggling to get better. When we have to grapple with a weakness in our game, we can get to a point of breakthrough. "Experts practice differently and more strategically. When they fail, they don''t blame it on luck or themselves. They have a strategy they can fix." (p 86).

2) Ignition - at some point in each of our lives, we watch a friend or colleague shoot to the moon (in some specific area of life or work), and we wonder, "how did he do that?" What switch was flipped in his brain? When we see it happen to someone just like us, it gives a sense that we could acquire that particular talent, whether it be a tennis swing, an ability to remodel a home, or learn to play the violin.

Coyle writes, "Ignition is about the set of signals and subconscious forces that create our identity; the moments that lead us to say that is who I want to be." He looks all over the globe to study how talent hotbeds were ignited: South Korean female golfers, Russian tennis players, Brazilian soccer players, Curaçaon baseball players, to a charter school that started in Houston. These are great stories; fun to share with friends.

3) Master Coaching - this doesn''t mean you need some expensive, elite, impossible-to-access, famous coach. Nope, you just need a coach that has loads of experience, plenty of passion, and a knack for connecting interpersonally with his students.

"Master coaches aren''t like heads of state. Their personality--their core skill circuit--is to be more like farmers: careful, deliberate cultivators of myelin." (165)

My 3 greatest takeaways from the book:

1) Praise your children for their hard work, not for their intelligence or their innate abilities. If they make the connection between hard work and increasing skill, they will be increasingly motivated to work hard, which therefore leads to more talent. An upward cycle, if you will.
2) Savor the struggle. When my slice is really acting up on the golf course, view it as a mountain to be conquered. Zone in and do whatever it takes to correct that circuitry.
3) Don''t complain and envy those with more talent than me. Instead, use it as motivation and say, "If he can do it, so can I."
120 people found this helpful
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Steven Jones
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Outliers-lite
Reviewed in the United States on November 25, 2017
Anyone who''s read any Malcolm Gladwell book will recognize the narrative strategy (seemingly diverse vignettes illustrating different steps in an allegedly unified process), but author Coyle makes it more than a rip-off by using his breezy charm to skate through each... See more
Anyone who''s read any Malcolm Gladwell book will recognize the narrative strategy (seemingly diverse vignettes illustrating different steps in an allegedly unified process), but author Coyle makes it more than a rip-off by using his breezy charm to skate through each anecdote before it gets preachy or overstays its welcome. Any reader who (like me) is in the teaching or coaching field will come away with some new approaches to consider. Special note for football fans: there is a brief JaMarcus Russell section that aged hilariously, though that''s not the author''s fault.
31 people found this helpful
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Elijah Logozar
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Introduction to Myelin
Reviewed in the United States on February 16, 2021
Daniel Coyle argues that skill is mainly acquired through deliberate practice to offer clear feedback and require maximal attentional engagement. This is consistent with what I read in Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, but Daniel supports this... See more
Daniel Coyle argues that skill is mainly acquired through deliberate practice to offer clear feedback and require maximal attentional engagement. This is consistent with what I read in Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, but Daniel supports this by introducing neurological information on myelin, which helps automate patterns. The author has some knowledge of myelin based on research and interviewing specialists, but the author''s main point is inspiration. If deliberate practice regulates myelin, we control reasonably large aspects of our talent. There are many anecdotes about elite specialists in various fields with clear evidence of deliberate practice playing the biggest role in their improvement. Obviously, neuroplasticity plays a big role as well, but myelin is part of that system. I found ''The Talent Code'' to be instructive and inspirational. The layman should find this book easy to read, and specialists can consider it an introduction to myelin, though for technical information you should look elsewhere.
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Harish Nair
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Some good insights to mentoring
Reviewed in the United States on January 10, 2015
In this book, Daniel tires to explains some very well known adages like practice makes a man perfect and thus genes do not play a role in talent through some scientific contexts, sprinkled with an abundance of real life cases The first thing is the introduction... See more
In this book, Daniel tires to explains some very well known adages like practice makes a man perfect and thus genes do not play a role in talent through some scientific contexts, sprinkled with an abundance of real life cases

The first thing is the introduction to myelin. We all know that to master any topic, the level of difficulty needs to be progressively increased and practice s much as possible . . But if you want to know what it does to your brain cells , read this book and probably one would start to make oneself uncomfortable by choice. (Remember who moved my cheese ). While Daniel gives evidences of how this impacts formation of myelin, but the overall discussion on myelin remains limited and narrow

This book also gave me some key insights on efficacy of longer study schedule versus shorter study schedule and frequent testing. And also the role of commitment in learning progress. The need to adapt coaching methodology (suzuki violin method to GPS method) highlighted the different ways in which the brain looks at various skills.

The methodology around KIPP was also interesting. While Malcolm Gladwell had introduced us to it in his book ''Outliers '' , but Daniel gives us a good DNA of the same.

But the bottomline which Daniel wants to drive is that greatness is not a matter of genetics. It arises from a development of commitment (how that is triggered is still an enigma in this book) and practice. And if one is lucky enough to get a master coaching (like Ms Mary ) , a talent would be borne.
Some the ironies in the book (or maybe in life) was the approach of some of the masters towards prediction of individuals. While Jensen says it is difficult to say how an individual will end up, Linda Septien and for that matter even Mertinez feel that they can size up the talent pretty fast (like 20 seconds !!). The approach of Martinez to chat with the family to get a sense of commitment was interesting, but could be controversial. It would take a real master to separate the wheat from the chaff from such interaction.

My personal take away from this book is about the appropriate language and approach for motivation- as a mentor to team and as a parent.
6 people found this helpful
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Herman Jackson
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
It''ll work if you try it
Reviewed in the United States on August 16, 2009
With 34 reviews already written for this book I can only justify writing another if I think I have something to say that hasn''t been said by other reviewers. I have spent most of my adult life teaching, in universities and in industry. Through it all I have... See more
With 34 reviews already written for this book I can only justify writing another if I think I have something to say that hasn''t been said by other reviewers.

I have spent most of my adult life teaching, in universities and in industry. Through it all I have always sought better ways to perform the task of getting a concept or a bit of understanding from my head into that of someone else. And I''ve also often struggled with getting it into my own head, and many times I have struggled with getting from the novice stage to one of mastery of a concept or skill.

Bear with me as I attempt to set the stage for your understanding what I am trying to say. Being a scientist I''ll approach the topic from the viewpoint of a scientist. In science research, or the organization of existing research, is usually done either to (a) support (i.e. to "prove") a hypothesis or (b) to disprove a hypothesis. Coyle''s approach in "The Talent Code" is the former - he is assembling evidence in an attempt to prove that myelin is the "key" to developing talent. That''s fine, but what I am most interested in is that he has assembled a large amount of data concerning development of talent. We don''t have to accept his hypothesis to make use of his data.

The myelin sheath effectively makes some neuronal connections more effective than others; that is undeniable. Thus it is unarguably an important factor in speed of transmission. That, along with details of the chemistry of neurotransmitters, neuronal connections, the function of glial cells, and an infinitude of factors unknown collectively make up the "key" to developing talent.

I''m heading toward a strong recommendation of this book. How can I get there when I''ve just buried the author''s theory, the basis for the book, in a pile of other factors that I consider to be of potentially equal or greater importance? The answer is simple. Coyle has assembled a sequence of steps that he argues does lead to maximization of talent. And he backs up that assemblage of steps with enough examples to leave little doubt about the general "correctness" of his argument. Whether one accepts or rejects Coyle''s explanation the steps that he argues leads to talent development clearly work.

Who will benefit from reading this book, and why? If you are a teacher or a learner you can benefit greatly in the direct application of his observations to your daily work. If you want or need to develop a talent in yourself Coyle gives a blueprint for how to do that. If you are interested in the "myelin viewpoint" you''ll get a reasonably complete view of that. If you want to know the "answer" to the question of the biology/chemistry of how talent is developed, this isn''t the place to find it though you''ll see one such hypothesis developed in some detail.

In short, I recommend reading the book with the mindset that if you follow the prescription you''ll get the desired results. If he''s correct in that myelin is the magic ingredient so be it. If he''s wrong, you''ll still have the results, and that''s nothing to sneeze at.
71 people found this helpful
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Charles Botensten
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Good, Could Be Better
Reviewed in the United States on April 4, 2015
I first heard of myelin - at a Tony Robbin''s seminar. Ironic, I know. However the book brought to life this clear substance in our brain which automates many habits - in particular, super-athletes (or at least the elite ones).... See more
I first heard of myelin - at a Tony Robbin''s seminar. Ironic, I know. However the book brought to life this clear substance in our brain which automates many habits - in particular, super-athletes (or at least the elite ones). The author traveled the world figuring why small towns in Brazil (soccer), Russia (tennis), Puerto Rico (baseball), and South Korea (women''s golf), produce such a high rate of world class athletes. The examples are good, the book, ehh. I wouldn''t recommend it as the end all, be all. Buy if it''s cheap and don''t spend more than 2-3 days reading.
15 people found this helpful
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Top reviews from other countries

Lola A
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Talent: we can all cultivate it!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 29, 2020
I loved the premise of this book and it really delivered! I read it in a week whilst working on the frontlines of Covid 19. It is truly wonderful to learn that from childhood through our entire lives, we can be sparked to reach new heights. It also gave me hope to continue...See more
I loved the premise of this book and it really delivered! I read it in a week whilst working on the frontlines of Covid 19. It is truly wonderful to learn that from childhood through our entire lives, we can be sparked to reach new heights. It also gave me hope to continue to practice until I reached my own level of expertise in my hobbies and work alike. Highly recommended.
One person found this helpful
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Roger
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Don’t waste your money
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 5, 2019
I really don’t like to write negative reviews but this is a waste of money it’s nothing more than case studies of people that have learned some pretty amazing stuff
6 people found this helpful
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Jumhed
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great book.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 27, 2019
Lots of similar excellent books. I read them all to drum the lessons into my brain. It''s also great to know this stuff so you can encourage/teach/coach your own kids. Also get ''The Little Book of Talent'' by the same author, where he condenses the lessons from this book into...See more
Lots of similar excellent books. I read them all to drum the lessons into my brain. It''s also great to know this stuff so you can encourage/teach/coach your own kids. Also get ''The Little Book of Talent'' by the same author, where he condenses the lessons from this book into helpful short tips that you can use yourself.
3 people found this helpful
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Grant
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
If you are in to coaching, this is the book you need to read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 7, 2020
The book unravels the various conceptions about sporting talent and that nature may not necessarily be a factor in talent. Explains how there are so many vital factors that contribute to how athletes develop skill and endurance. You will be glad you read it.
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Ryan
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great insight on nature vs. nurture
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 6, 2021
A really interesting book that challenges popular conventions on nature vs. nurture, using a number of real life examples. Puts things into perspective, motivates and entices you throughout.
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