David Epstein

The Sports Gene
  • The Sports Gene

  • ‘A wonderful book. Thoughtful…fascinating’ Malcolm Gladwell

    Do you believe some people are born athletes?

    Is sporting talent innate or something that can be achieved through endurance and practise?


    In this ground-breaking and entertaining exploration of athletic success, award-winning writer David Epstein gets to the heart of the great nature vs. nurture debate, and explodes myths about how and why humans excel.


    Along the way, Epstein:

    - Exposes the flaws in the so-called 10,000-hour rule that states that rigorous practice from a young age is the only route to success.

    - Shows why some skills that we imagine are innate are not – like the bullet-fast reactions of a baseball player.

    - Uncovers why other characteristics that we assume are entirely voluntary, like the motivation to practice, might in fact have important genetic components.


    Throughout, The Sports Gene forces us to rethink the very nature of success.

David Epstein is an award-winning senior writer for Sports Illustrated, where he covers sports science, medicine, and Olympic sports. His investigative pieces are among Sports Illustrated’s most high-profile stories. An avid runner himself, he earned All-East honours on Columbia University's varsity track squad. This is his first book.

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