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Bounce: Mozart, Federer, Picasso, Beckham, and the Science of Success

3.99  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,935 Ratings  ·  323 Reviews
Why have all the sprinters who have run the 100 meters in under ten seconds been black?

What's one thing Mozart, Venus Williams, and Michelangelo have in common?

Is it good to praise a child's intelligence?

Why are baseball players so superstitious?

Few things in life are more satisfying than beating a rival. We love to win and hate to lose, whether it's on the playing field
...more
ebook, 336 pages
Published April 20th 2010 by HarperCollins e-books (first published 2010)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Loy Machedo
Jan 21, 2012 Loy Machedo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I first read the title ‘Bounce’ by Matthew Syed, I was more intrigued with the name of the author than on what the book was about.

Mathew Syed - a British Journalist and Broadcaster was, as it turned out was born of a British Pakistani father and a Welsh mother. To his credentials he was a Five times Men’s Single Champion at the Commonwealth Table Tennis Champion and represented Great Britain for two Olympic Games.

His book Bounce thus turned out to be a book that focused on excellence in spo
...more
Jukka
Bounce - Matthew Syed

I read Syed got a million dollar advance for this, which made quite a few people wonder. Apparently he (or actually his agent Jonny Geller) pitched the book as the 'Freakonomics of Sport'. It got reworked along the way so it applies now to life in general, with the title getting dressed up rather late in the process. The title had listed Tiger Woods; he was dropped, and 'Bounce' was picked as a hook word for the title. I am kind of surprised they didn't decide to edit Tiger
...more
Mukesh Emes
Aug 27, 2015 Mukesh Emes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ido
Oct 02, 2015 Ido rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People Who Think They Can't
It all comes down to this: Nature VS Nurture.

צפו בסיקור בוידאו! :-)

In the everlasting fight between Nature and Nurture, Matthew
proves that it's not GENES that determines success, no, it's what
you DO with what you have and how strongly you want
it, that makes you a success.

Matthew starts off with examples from his career as a table tennis champion.
He explain that opportunities, determination, passion and
a lot of time was the factor that has distinguished him from other
table-tennis players, not ta
...more
Steve Greenleaf
I have to say that Bounce was a bit like taking a refresher course, having already read Geoff Covlin's Talent Is Overrated, Daniel Coyle's The Talent Code, and Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers, all three of which Syed acknowledges as worthy predecessors. So I didn't learn a great deal new from reading Bounce. But a refresher, with some new information added, is worthwhile, and so I found this book. (I should also note that all four books draw on the pioneering work of academic psychologist Anders Eri ...more
Xavier Guillaume
Feb 10, 2012 Xavier Guillaume rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who enjoy reading interesting non-fiction
Shelves: non-fiction
This book redefined the way I think about talent. It breaks it down and shows how talent is derivative of countless hours of practice. In fact, with only 10,000 hours of purposeful practice you, me, or anyone can become an expert/master in whichever field they choose. Whether it's chess, archery, figure skating, or capoeira. hehe. All that practice puts the complicated processes into implicit memory. Your muscles begin to work automatically, freeing your brain to focus on expert maneuvers.

The bo
...more
Tim
Jan 20, 2013 Tim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Syed took a lot of research carried out in the field of success, especially success in sports, and compiled it into a very readable book which is all the more interesting because its author isn't a scientist, but someone who has put the science he writes about to use: He's a Table Tennis Olympian. Syed's writing style is clear and enthusiastic, and he has a lot of personal experience to brighten up the hard facts. There's a lot of eye-opening and downright useful information in the book. It's al ...more
Andrew Gray
Sep 03, 2013 Andrew Gray rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great book – should be compulsory reading all parents and teachers. It has changed the way I think about encouraging my children and work teammates – praising their efforts and hard work rather than their innate "skill". As an advisor to owner- managed businesses, I see the 10,000 hour/10 year experience rule being lived out in many ways. For example most professionals spend their 20s and early 30s mastering the technical aspects of their profession, and the next decade mastering management an ...more
Jason Yang
Unfortunately, I really didn't like this book. Seyd tries realy hard to write a story abuot success, but it ends up being somewhere between Malcolm Gladwell and Steven Pinker - success is a combination of hard work and being fortunate with the middle ground between good nature and nurture. It's hard for me not to be biased because I've read so many of these stories that they feel like they are only rehashing the ideas of others.

I don't think success is easy, but in my own life and from the stori
...more
Aurelien
Aug 17, 2015 Aurelien rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sport, self-help
What set great achievers and successful people apart from the rest? Simple: hard work and practice.

Simple as and, yet, it still is baffling to see how many still believe in 'talent' or 'genius' that is, inner and innate capabilities that one either has or doesn't! Debunking many prejudices, from child prodigies to so called sparks of creative genius, Matthew Syed here shows that success and achievement have nothing to do with genetic predispositions (talent, then) but, are down to hard work, me
...more
Jason
Aug 10, 2015 Jason rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good book. Well written and deeply researched. To be honest, at first I thought it was merely a clone of Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers. The main premise of the book being that expertise is not derived from genetics or innate ability, but rather from practice and lots of it. In fact 10,000 hours of it. I was happy to see rather quickly that the author quickly and thoroughly acknowledges Gladwell's work. This story I thought took a rather different direction and added to the conversation of what s ...more
John Ege
Oct 07, 2014 John Ege rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book covers a lot of areas, same research that you'd find in other books like Outliers, Talent is Overrated, etc. but still found it a really good read. The author is an athlete (tabletop tennis Olympian), details how hard work, purposeful practice and incredible amount of time (and luck that he had a regulation tabletop in his house) contributed to his own success.

He covers familiar territory discrediting the talent myth, but also goes into how the talent myth can actually impede success
...more
Mark Speed
Hmm. Judging by the high ratings, some people were surprised to hear that the harder you work at stuff, the better you get. The surprise is that this is a surprise to some people.
Alexianne
Nov 18, 2014 Alexianne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Brilliant book yet inconclusive.
Overall, it is pure pleasure to read as Syed, a sportsman in his own right speaks of numerous ideas and common beliefs in sports, business and life in general and dismisses the idea that talent is imperative in excellence. With the help of brilliant examples, the author dismisses this myth and advocates the scientific work of Ericsson that excellence is not reserved to the very few but is within the reach of any one of us. It centres around the famous 10,000 hours
...more
Walk
Oct 02, 2014 Walk rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: better-me, plus4
I could not resist a book written by a British ping-pong champion, you don't get many opportunities like that.

The book does a great job of putting forward the "10,000 hours or useful practice will make you good at just about anything" idea.

The surprise is there are people resist the idea.

The idea of the "natural talent" seems to have sprung from some Victorian relative of Charles Darwin.

Now why would an English upper class toff sitting atop an empire want to put forward the idea that some people
...more
Eddy Allen
Apr 01, 2014 Eddy Allen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
cc:

Why have all the sprinters who have run the 100 meters in under ten seconds been black?

What's one thing Mozart, Venus Williams, and Michelangelo have in common?

Is it good to praise a child's intelligence?

Why are baseball players so superstitious?

Few things in life are more satisfying than beating a rival. We love to win and hate to lose, whether it's on the playing field or at the ballot box, in the office or in the classroom. In this bold new look at human behavior, award-winning journal
...more
Arminzerella
What do all of these people have in common? They are all virtuosos, masters in their fields, whether it be sports, the arts, music, etc. Many would see them as innately talented, but Matthew Syed proposes something different. A proponent of Malcolm Gladwell’s theory that talent is learned and honed through practice (about 10,000 hours to reach the levels of the elite), Syed exposes the effort involved in becoming the top tennis player, or musician. It’s the hours that they put in that really mak ...more
Jim
May 08, 2011 Jim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A truly fascinating read, where Syed rips apart the talent myth from both his own personal experience (as an Olympic table tennis player) and from surveying the world of other sports, where the idea that some "heroes" have an innate talent that cannot be learned is strongest. I guarantee that if you finish this book, and if you haven't come across any of these arguments or opinions before, then you will be looking at the world, and possibly yourself, in a different way from here on in.
What make
...more
Cristiana
For such a short & fast read, I have a lot to say about this book. Not because the book demands or merits superabundance of personal thought, but because it touched on a few topics which I spend a great deal of thought on anyways.

Part I - I wish this was the entirety of the book. If it were, I would recommend it to every professional person, athlete, artist and student. In summary: You can achieve success in any discipline if you make it happen for yourself and put in sufficient, structured,
...more
Stuart
Aug 20, 2012 Stuart rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Nominated for William Hill's Sports Book of the Year in 2010, this examines the case for the hypothesis that natural talent is bunk, and practice is what makes you great. Syed is an ex table tennis player, and focuses on sport, but covers examples from anywhere he can find them, including the collapse of Enron.

This was really interesting. I basically believed in the central premise before I read it, but the amount of evidence he presents seems pretty conclusive. My favourite 'study' was a Hungar
...more
Lauren
May 25, 2010 Lauren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Vince's review: (he should really get a Goodreads account...)
Eye popping! I finished this book nearly 2 weeks ago and still, that's
my reaction when I think back over this piece of literature. Read this
book and you'll never look at top athletes, CEOs, musicians, or any
field in the same way. I couldn't put this book down; the data flowed
like a well written story; the story read like a great conversation - if
you enjoyed Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers, read this book!

I have to admit, when I first start
...more
Santhosh
Jun 05, 2015 Santhosh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ben Azadi
We tend to assign words like ‘genius’, ‘naturally gifted’ and ‘prodigy’ to people who achieve success – yet the author Mathew Syed claims that excellence comes from practice, specifically something called "purposeful practice".

Syed supports Malcolm Gladwell’s point that a major component of success is many hours of sustained practice (10,000 hours = 2.7 hours a day for 10 years). Syed insists it more than just hours – the practice itself needs to be purposeful with quality feedback.

Syed also tal
...more
Joe O'Donnell
What 19s the secret of sporting success? What separates the Olympic champion from his or her peers? Is it raw talent, or some other aptitude? These are the questions that Times sportswriter Matthew Syed sets out to answer in 1CBounce 1D.

The central thesis of 1CBounce 1D is that sport is essentially a meritocracy, with Syed viewing sporting success as having far more to do with Malcolm Gladwell 19s 1C10,000 hours rule 1D than any notions of child prodigies or natural genius. Syed sees the 1CThe T
...more
Arthur Lau
Dec 29, 2015 Arthur Lau rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nature vs nurture or talent vs effort - the author argues for the importance of the latter, telling his own story as a former professional table tennis player and using case studies of successful individuals, mostly sportspeople. Well-written and convincingly put together. Some lessons:
- the importance of purposeful practice (not just 10,000 hours but purposeful and meaningful practice), feedback (learning where things went wrong and improving), internalised motivation (why not the how), and be
...more
Sanjay Gupta
May 05, 2015 Sanjay Gupta rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After you read this book, you'll think a thousand times before making statements like “How talented that guy is; excellence is in his genes.” Or, “Oh, she's such a gifted child – no wonder she won the figure skating championship.”

Matthew Syed (himself a Commonwealth table tennis champion) bursts several myths and lays down the principles associated with extraordinary achievement: the popular but ill-conceived idea of talent as a mystic, elusive thing; the myth of the child prodigy (Mozart, Tiger
...more
Saket Mathur
Jun 27, 2014 Saket Mathur rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
BOUNCE is a great book which successfully delves into one of the great questions that everybody has around how to become a legendary sport star. It breaks the myth around what is perceived to be the reason behind being success in sports i.e. God Gift.

In very simple words Matthew has explained how "purposeful practice" can bring success to anybody who desires. The number of narratives he has provided in this book reinforces the fact that it is only sheer dedication and purposeful practice that ha
...more
Joey
Aug 13, 2015 Joey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bounce

The short title of the book does not provide hints of the message of the book - debunking the general belief that talent is the king and providing examples and analysis of purposeful practice, internalized motivation and growth mindset are more instrumental for success.

Numerous famous people such as Mozart, Pisasso, Beckham and so on go were quoted in the book. Their success is not because they are a genuis though as frist glimpse. They endured long long long hours of dedicated and purpose
...more
Masatoshi Nishimura
Aug 06, 2015 Masatoshi Nishimura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
The authoer, Matthew Syed is an olympic table tennis athlete from UK. That fact itself boosts its credibility. The theme was straight forward: what it takes to be a new player. The message was not so much new, that he even mentioned many concepts were borrowed from Malcom's "Outlier" and a psychologist Anders Ericsson. Nevertheless, he carries on with many examples and proving why they are true, until you are fully convinced of those theories.
Karen Grothe
Jun 11, 2015 Karen Grothe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: professional
Interesting book about how practice creates world-class expertise/ability, not "talent". The author makes a good case for how emphasis on "talent" (which is usually seen as genetic, or something one is born with) can create disincentives for people to improve, while an emphasis on how hard someone has worked for something encourages people to continue to improve. One interesting example in the book which applies to business is how Enron had a culture emphasizing talent over domain expertise whic ...more
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Bounce Do you think valid argument 1 12 Jun 30, 2011 12:50PM  
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  • Nerve: Poise Under Pressure, Serenity Under Stress, and the Brave New Science of Fear and Cool
  • The Talent Code: Unlocking the Secret of Skill in Sports, Art, Music, Math, and Just About Everything Else
  • Practice Perfect: 42 Rules for Getting Better at Getting Better
  • Nine Things Successful People Do Differently
  • Succeeding When You're Supposed to Fail: The 6 Enduring Principles of High Achievement
  • Willful Blindness: Why We Ignore the Obvious at Our Peril
  • On Second Thought: Outsmarting Your Mind's Hard-Wired Habits
  • Wisdom: From Philosophy to Neuroscience
  • Seven Deadly Sins: My Pursuit of Lance Armstrong
  • Talent is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else
  • Little Bets: How Breakthrough Ideas Emerge from Small Discoveries
  • Stop Stealing Dreams
  • Flipnosis: The Art of Split-Second Persuasion
  • What's Stopping You?: Why Smart People Don't Always Reach Their Potential, and How You Can

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“Well, it doesn’t work. Lowering standards just leads to poorly educated students who feel entitled to easy work and lavish praise.” 2 likes
“The subversive idea at the centre of Ericsson’s work is that excellence is not reserved for the lucky few but can be achieved by almost all of us.” 1 likes
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