June 24th, 2013

This is where I’ll post thoughts, pictures, and videos related to my book, and perhaps to current events that relate to genetics and sports. My book, The Sports Gene, encompasses essentially all that we have learned in the decade since the sequencing of the human genome about what genetic science can tell us about athleticism. (And what it can’t. The bullet-fast reactions of a Major League hitter? Not genetic.) I reported from below the equator and above the Arctic Circle; from an autonomous, rain-forested region of Jamaica from which sprinters are said to spring, and along the altitudinous ledges of the Rift Valley in Kenya, home of the world’s greatest distance runners. My book also includes original data analysis of, for example, the body types of NBA players. (If you know an American man between the ages of 20 and 40 who is at least seven feet tall, there’s a 17% chance he’s in the NBA right now.) Because geneticists have tip-toed into the bramble patches of issues like gender and race, this book follows them there. I hope you will enjoy this exploration of all that genetics can currently tell us about the great nature versus nurture debate as it pertains to sports.