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Nature Vs. Nurture In Sport Essay

1423 words - 6 pages

What makes a good athlete? What separates a person on the 1st line up from a bench warmer? Where does athleticism come from? Is it from our genes, or is it a product of the environment we live in? These are the types of questions that arise in the nature vs. nurture debate pertaining about athletic ability. In 1582, British educator, Richard Mulcaster wrote that
''Nature makes the boy toward, nurture sees him forward,'' he gave the world
a euphonious name for an opposition that has been debated ever since; Nature and Nurture. People's
beliefs about the roles of heredity and environment affect their opinions on an
astonishing range of topics including sports. The nature versus nurture debate ...view middle of the document...

Nurture, the environment in which someone lives, is the main contributor to creating athletes. Within nurture there are three main factors that enhance athletic ability; the people they are surrounded by, the location of the individual and their training techniques. Individuals such as coaches and parents nurture hopeful athletes and push them for motivation. The community and the environment of an individual affects their athletic potential as certain countries and cultures gear members towards one specific sport. An individual’s training methods similarly aids in the creation of professional athletes. In the nature versus nurture debate pertaining about athletic ability, nurture is the most significant contributor in creating elite athletes as the people and the environment that surrounds them shapes them as athletes as well as the intensity and effectiveness of their training. Although nature and heredity play a role in the creation of professional athletes, one cannot underestimate the value of the environment to create great athletes.

A significant and often overlooked factor in the development of athletes is culture. The importance that a nation or community places on a particular sport can have a dramatic influence on aspiring athletes. Around the world there are different sports that are admired by the community. For example, in Canada, over the years ice hockey has become an essential component of the national identity . Recent studies have shown that Canada has three times more children playing hockey than Sweden, Russia, Finland, the Slovakia and Czech Republic combined. As a result Canada has given birth to a great amount of professional hockey players. Other countries around the world have similar sport related associations including Austria with skiing and Kenya with long distance running.
Along with culture the size of the community affects athletic ability. Research has indicated that the size of the city where an athlete spends their early years may also affect their probability of attaining elite-level performance. After examining birthplace in professional basketball, baseball, ice-hockey players ______ found that the ideal city size for athlete development appears to be between a population of 1000 and 500,000 people. Consequently the location of an individual plays a large role in nurturing them into athletes.

Parents are the _____ and nature their children to their beliefs. Researches brought up the critical role that parents play in promoting the athletic development of their children. In a study of exceptional individuals across a range of sports and other activities, Bloom reported that parental resources, such as support, were imperative in nurturing talent. Athletes go through stages of development and resources provided by parents shift as athletes mature. During early sport development, parents typically provide the initial opportunity to get involved in sports. In essence, parents play a leadership role by...

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