Friday, August 17, 2012
Batman and Robin Recommend 5th and 6th Grade Science!!
What do you think about the notions about Phelps’s built-in, anatomical advantages?
When someone does something impressive, like winning gold medals in swimming, we try to come up with some far-fetched reason for it, like he or she has to have some bizarre physiological adaptation or freaky anatomy. But most things that you measure in human beings fall within predictable ranges.
What do you think accounts for Phelps’s success then?
Phelps has very good stroke mechanics—that certainly goes a long way. Some people also have better “locomotive genius”—this is when swimmers have that sense of moving the water around them and how much water they are displacing.
Why do you think these ideas of physiological advantage are often repeated?
I guess it’s hard for people just to believe that it can just be stroke mechanics for Phelps or any other swimmer. Unless a seemingly suitable explanation comes up, people then think that this individual must be cheating or doping. It couldn’t just be that the guy trained his guts out.
So do you think there is anything to these “natural physical gift” arguments?
I’m sure if we could measure Phelps as much as we would like, we would find attributes better than average for swimming, but I don’t think we would find any glaring abnormalities.
Thanks to Scientific American. Check out this link for more information. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=what-makes-michael-phelps-so-good