Nature, Nurture, Practice, Performance and Posterity

In the early part of this week there have been some interesting items in Australia that have added to the discussions about the role nature and nurture play in practice, performance and posterity.

Matthew Syed, author of Bounce: How Champions are Made was interviewed on Radio National’s Life Matters program. This is a short YouTube clip to prompt discussion about opportunities to practice.

The Annals of Internal Medicine have published a paper on The Effects of Growth Hormone on Body Composition and Physical Performance in Recreational Athletes (Udo Meinhardt, Anne E. Nelson,  Jennifer L. Hansen, Vita Birzniece, David Clifford, Kin-Chuen Leung, Kenneth Graham, and Ken K.Y. Ho,.) The paper concluded that “Growth hormone supplementation influenced body composition and increased sprint capacity when administered alone and in combination with testosterone”. There is a podcast discussion of Human Growth Hormone on ABC’s AM program.

This week Professor Robyn Richmond presented findings of her study of 188 Australians who had reached 100 years of age. She suggested that and found maintaining social networks, keeping  active physically and mentally, and being open to change were common traits in this cohort. A news item from the University of New South Wales quotes Professor Richmond: “About 20 to 30 per cent of the likelihood of living to 100 is because of your genes. But that leaves 70 to 80 per cent up to environmental factors.”  “The major finding of this study is the impact of personality.” This is a podcast link to an interview with Professor Richmond.
Photo Credits
Little Monks Playing


  1. Hi Keith,
    A quick hello, and thanks for the link to the Syed interview– I’m coordinating a discussion on the book and related talent development work (Coyle, Bloom, etc.) in a couple of weeks. We’re encouraging folks to use multiple paths to access the concepts (huh, wonder where that idea came from:-))– this is a nice additional option.
    Lilacs are blooming in the American Midwest– really too early, but lovely just the same:-)

    • Carmen, I am delighted you called by to this post. I have made sure my spelling of Syed is correct! I hoped this post might be of interest to you. I wonder if I might participate in your discussions?
      Autumn in Mongarlowe with wonderful colours!

  2. Hi Keith–
    The discussion will be mostly with folks new to some of these concepts and is part of a developing experiment; let me talk to my co-conspirators:-), and I’ll get back to you with more info/context. It would be great to tap into your expertise…although the time difference might be tricky!

    • That would be great. I do not want to intrude on your discussions and would be delighted to know where they occur so that I could follow them.

  3. […] I have written a great deal in this blog about the impact CCK08 had upon my thinking and practice. Recently I had an opportunity to catch up with one of my on-line companions from CCK08, Carmen Tschofen. We came together to discuss talent and giftedness. Our conversation drew upon some exchanges we had during CCK08 and subsequently after I wrote this post about nature and nurture. […]


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here