Most of those who contact us initially seem unaware that the human capacity to develop habits changes after the age of about 14, maybe 15. Until that time, Mother Nature takes care of everything. It's "nothing" for a growing boy or girl to develop habits. That's so commonplace that we don't give it a thought. "Kids" just appear to acquire habits - a lot of them - so we don't notice how that happens.
Then there are the "naturals." They are the exceptions to the habit development rules, coming in "factory equipped." They already have the gross talent for what they do and nobody knows why or how that happens. It's part of the "gift" that belongs to the savants of this world, and it's non-transferrable. It can't be improved upon and the holder can't teach it to anyone else. We'd all rather have a "natural" than someone who requires development. We don't want to question it. We just applaud it.
Without knowing why they seem much more "accomplished" than others, recruiters tend to look for them first. They are easiest to spot. They stand out from the rest. Coaches love the fact that savants make them look good. And why not?
Of course, being a savant rarely involves "everything" in that person's life. It is usually associated with a rather narrow track, and savants seldom get better or worse since their special "cups" come already filled.
Whether we realize it or not, for all non-savants, developing habits over the years gets harder. After our early teens, it takes longer to memorize thoughts, let alone actions, and that difficulty progresses as we go along through life.
Not noticing that may even account for why we become so engrossed with the idea of practice. Does more and more practice really generate better performance?
We may not like such questions, but we may need to ponder them.
Most sports, and most players in those sports, tend to stay at about the same levels of proficiency, year in and year out. There are few variations in individual "averages," and such as are there are usually attributed to "technology," or a new approach to building "strength." (Or to phenoms like Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods). While none of those should be discounted, if we really intend to make gains that embrace the majority of players (not just the exceptions), then we need to move to understand, appreciate and implement the next higher level of development.
That requires only one small change in our focus of attention. How to put in motion a process that is similar to that which Mother Nature provided when we were young. When that one new step is added to the coaching portfolio, competence escalates, and with that, the development level of players and students.
Habits, strength and technology do not substitute for one another. They are complementary, but none of them can do the job alone.
KeyGolf's mission is to promote and provide those circumstances for coaches, to help elevate coaching outcomes to the next level of performance.
No doubt, development can come accidentally, but waiting for that is a bit like playing the lottery or just waiting on the next savant to show up.
It is not possible to perform better today using the same skills and habits as yesterday. Most know that. The problem is that we've tried to make our growth rely only on skill. Habits have been left to little more than conversation.