Tony DeMeo


The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle

The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle is a must read book for anyone in the
teaching or coaching field. Coyle gives a great explanation of how, why
and where talent is developed. In his book The Outliers Malcolm Gladwell discusses the”10,000 Hour Rule” which says it takes 10,000 hours of repetition to master a skill. The Talent Code explains why this is the case.

One of the key principles of this book is that Talent is not born – it’s
GROWN. How it’s learned and how the skill is practiced will determine
how well the skill is learned. So it’s not just counting hours – it’s making
those hours count.

The Myelin Discovery. Myelin was discovered by George Bartzolws.
Myelin is a fiber that wraps around nerves like insulation while a skill is
being practiced. The more you practice the more myelin you grow. So skill isn’t muscle memory its myelin growth.

Deep Practice. “Deep Practice” is practicing in the zone with total
awareness. There are three rules of deep practice:

1. Chunk it up. Absorb the whole thing then break it into pieces
or “chunks”. Slow it down. Practice develops a blueprint.

2. Repeat it. Practice it over and over daily. Missed practices for
whatever reason destroys skill. This is why a player coming back
from an injury isn’t as effective as he was prior to the missed practice.
Some say “he’s rusty”.

3. Learn it to feel it. An error should bother you. Learn from your
mistake correct it and then do it again. Self-coaching is most effective.
Deep Practice produces myelin which grows skill. It’s all about patience
and persistence. You must struggle and feel discomfort to grow your skill.

Growth is never comfortable – hence the term “growing pains”.