To become an elite performer you need a combination of nature and nurture. Nature is the abilities you are born with, these are physical, bio-mechanical and mental and controlled by your genes i.e. muscle structure. To a certain extent you can change these attributes. We develop these through training and performing. Nurture is how you develop these natural aspects. We can develop them in a number of ways parental nurture, facilities, schools and coaching.
Roger Black is good example of a lot of natural ability and very little nurturing required for him to become an elite athlete. Under his first coach he was told just to run. But when he changed coaches his new coach tried to make the race more technical and change his running style. Black then started to run slower times. But there are cases where countries have developed sports people who do not have all these natural abilities i.e. China and their gymnasts. Rather than picking them ones that take the sport up and are good at it China pick up very young children and train them very hard until they become elite athletes. The combination is different for everyone.
The person I am going to look at is David Beckham who currently plays for Real Madrid in Spain. David inherited from his parents most of the abilities required to become a top athlete. He inherited focus, determination and the will to win which he has showed many times for both club and country. For instance when he drove England forward and on to victory against Macedonia he showed all these abilities and more because when England were in trouble and behind he wanted the ball and raised the confidence of the rest of the players. He also inherited good discipline in that he works hard and plays fair as well as when he is told a to play in a position he stays in the place he is suppose to and does not wonder off. He has got high self confidence. When he played his first poor game for Real Madrid and was booed off the pitch when he was substituted he did not let it bother him because he knew that he could and would play better than that. He came back the next game and played really well. This shows that he has good self confidence and that a challenge doesn’t faze him. But the best example of David’s mental strength that he inherited from his parents was when he was sent of in the world cup for his country. He became public enemy number one but has worked hard and earned the respect of his countrymen by his performances for his country.
Not only has David inherited mental attributes required to become an elite performer from his parents he also inherited physical abilities from them too. David has good strength, which he inherited from his parents but also worked on it through out his career. He inherited muscular endurance because he able to keep running and playing to his best for the whole ninety minutes. He worked on this as he got older but if the natural ability wasn’t there he would not be able to become an elite performer.
As well as having great natural ability David was also nurtured very well as a child, firstly by his parents and then by Manchester United. In interviews with David he has often spoken about how he and his father used to go down to his local park and pass the ball to each other. This tended to be over about forty yards this nurtured the ability to pass the ball over a long distance very well. David is now one of the best passers in the sport. It was David’s passing ability that originally attracted Manchester United to him. Once he was at Manchester United where he signed for them at ten he was nurtured very well as the coaching and the facilities where some of the best in the country. Manchester United currently has the best training facilities in the country. His schools always encouraged him too.
They allowed him time off to attend training sessions and games in Manchester. Without this he would have been unable to play for Manchester Untied and then improve through the training. At Manchester United they taught him about diet and to eat the right things. This enabled him to stay healthy and control of his weight. He was also nurtured to deal with the media from a very young age at Manchester United because he was in the media from a very young age. He dealt with this because of the nurturing he received from Manchester United. Without all these nurturing factors David would not have been able to become an elite performer.
I think that it was a mixture of natural talent, physical abilities and the good nurturing David received as a boy that allowed him to become an elite performer. Although I think it is mainly his natural abilities that have allowed him to get to the very top of the sport. These are his mental, attributes such as determination focus and his will to win. These along side good nurturing will always produce a good sports person.