Tiger Woods at two years of age could swing a golf club better than I can now...true story as you can see in the clip on the right.

Sorry there's no clip of me to compare and giggle at.

Tiger could play at two.

As well as choosing a favourable strategy at random, he also happened to have an excellent amateur golfer as a father who introduced him to golf very early.

By the time of that video, he had been practising for something like a year. With great coaching. From a father who loved golf.

Who knows how much practise he'd done in that time too.

We can speak to two people who've been golfing for a year. One could have been playing once every week or two, the other has been playing three times per week with coaching. 

That same time playing takes on a very different complexion pretty quickly given more info.

 

Looking at two year old Tiger, he was bloody good but by no means the finished article, right? He wouldn't have won all of those PGA titles at that standard, would he?

If Tiger had stopped playing then, I doubt we would have ever heard about him for his golfing ability.

If he'd stopped practising after his first junior world championship in 1988 (this first of six consecutive wins) and came back now, would he look like the same Tiger?

How about if he stopped after his first major pro win in 1997 and came back now - would he play at the same level?

 

Tiger has lived golf consistently with high quality coaching for 37 years.

Do you think that given a love for golf cultivated like that for 37 years I could have been a good golfer? How about you?

This is not to belittle the achievements of those who did such things. All that work is beautiful. 

It is merely to say their achievements were as a result of their good work, not of their inherent 'specialness' or 'talent'.

 

Even when we see very young children displaying high level talents, they've often practised more than you could imagine. They weren't born that way.

On top of that, the practise has to be consistent, high quality and over a long period of time or that child producing talented displays will not be able to do the same later on.

 

A natural, inborn, innate talent would remain fairly constant regardless of practise or lack thereof. 

It would be like a reflex action; automatic, consistently of the same quality and only changing its qualities under extreme circumstances.

 

How about people who move in a more athletic manner than others? Isn't that inborn? 

How can we go about improving our own sporting prowess and athleticism if we didn't flourish and get ahead early?

Stay with me...it's coming.

 

Arton "More Tony the Tiger than Tiger Woods" Baleci

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