People admire athletes because of their displays of physical prowess from swimming to basketball to football. The way players move, kick, jump and do whatever athletic manoeuvre is akin to poetry, but how do they attain that level? Is it purely talent or hard work or a combination of both?
The 10,000 Hour Threshold
Malcolm Gladwell popularised the 10,000 hour rule to become an expert in a chosen field. According to his book, a person needs deliberate practice that totals 10,000 hours to achieve mastery. He gave this as the reason Bill Gates became successful because he started programming in his teens. Gladwell also mentioned the hours the Beatles put in playing all night gigs before they took the world by storm.
Athletes who want to become superstars or at least make a career out of their chosen sport must consider the number of hours they put in for deliberate practice. Footballers who want to make it to the big leagues and World Cup hone their craft and master the basics. However, a player must also be at the right place at the right time to become successful.
An athlete that makes it to professional leagues is an outlier, becoming one of the best athletes in a sport, sometimes boil down to the smallest things and the number of hours put in training.
Coaches also play an important role in the development of a player. They will make the training program, conditioning drills and motivational talks to enable athletes to reach their full potential.
The Journey to Greatness
Coaches and players need to continually enhance their craft through practice and reading football coaching books.
Coaches also need to master their strategies and adjust to the needs and talent of their players. They must create training programs and plays that bring out the best in their players. They must study each opponent and understand the tactics they implement to create successful countermeasures.
The 10,000 hour rule applies to both players and coaches, or anybody who want to succeed in their chosen profession. Make the time for deliberate practice to master a skill and achieve your full potential.