Occassional thoughts about orienteering
Monday, March 20, 2006
Theory of orienteeringThis quote about baseball, pretty much sums up my feeling about orienteering and ideas about how to train (i.e. a "theory of orienteering"):
My basic theory of baseball is that any theory of baseball will work if the talent is good enough. A "theory" or a clear idea of how you're going to win is extremely useful to a baseball team, because it organizes the work, clarifies the needs and goals of the team; it provides focus and direction among a dizzying array of options and alternatives.
The quote is from Bill James, my favorite baseball writer. He wrote it in his Baseball Abstract back in 1986 and is re-quoted in a new book by Scott Gray called "The Mind of Bill James."
Getting back to orienteering, what I think James' quote is getting at is the idea that you should have an idea about how and why you train. That idea, that "theory" or "philosophy," works as a short cut to help you decide what to do. And by following through on your ideas, you gain some confidence about your preparation and training. Far more important than the specifics of the idea is that you do the work to fit your idea.
James also stressed "talent," but I think this is where orienteering and baseball seperate. I think that natural talent is relatively unimportant in orienteering (especially in the U.S.). In baseball, having a theory but not the talent won't get a team very far. But in orienteering, I suspect that a theory and fulfilling the theory will go a long way. posted by Michael | 7:07 PM
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