Sunday, August 17, 2008

Science and the Summer Olympics

I haven't written a post in almost three weeks. That is because I have been enthralled with all that is the Summer Olympics in Beijing and the phenom that is Michael Phelps. I have been keeping up with him ever since I first got a glimpse of his talent watching the Athens Olympics back in '04. He is awesome. He is amazing. He is definitely the greatest Olympian in history. Of course Phelps isn't the only great athlete in this Olympic games. As an audience, we also have the pleasure of cheering on other great swimmers like Jason Lezak, Aaron Piersol, and Dana Torres and Jamaican runner Usain Bolt to name a few. But how do they do it? How do these athletes constantly become faster and faster and break more and more world records? Some say that it's genetics, that these athletes were born to do these things. For years, researchers have been studying the scientific factors that contribute to superior athletic performance for the select few who go on to be world-famous sportsmen. What they have determined is that it has more do to with physiology than genetics.

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