Bounce: the myth of talent and the power of practice
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Matthew Syed

Two-time Olympian Matthew Syed argues in this book that ‘talent’ is the result of thousands of hours of purposeful practice, and is not something innate. Expert knowledge, he suggests, comes from experience, and in order to become an expert at something, individuals must be willing to embrace failure.

Syed refers to the ‘iceberg-illusion’, whereby an outstanding display of talent in a person is seen and appreciated only at the end point, making it look innate. Such a view fails to capture the years of practice that make such ‘talent’ possible. His main argument is that quality and quantity of practice matters more than ideas of talent.

Syed draws on neuroscience and the example of successful people to reveal the secrets of success, not just in sport, but life. 

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Matthew Syed

Published by:
Harper Collins Publishing

Date of publication:
April 2010

Country of origin:

CPD opportunities:

Though not explicitly related to education, Syed’s book may make for interesting reading for teachers keen to nurture ‘talent’ and positive thinking in their pupils. 


Record ID:
R222 / 111
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