Essential Reads

Epigenetic Mechanism in the Cerebellum Drives Motor Learning

New research pinpoints how we learn new motor skills such as riding a bicycle, playing the piano, driving a car, etc.

Acceptance and Transformation

Should left-handers demand that half the baseball diamond be reversed?

Skilled Performance Takes More Than Practice

By Art Markman Ph.D. on June 23, 2016 in Ulterior Motives
There has been a big debate in psychology about whether elite performance reflects talents or skills. A new meta-analysis helps to resolve this question.

The Naturalistic Fallacy Fallacy (Part I)

While it's true that "is doesn't imply ought," it's dangerous and stupid to ignore human nature.

More Posts on Sport and Competition

Housewives of NJ: Triangulation

By Jeremy Clyman Psy.D. on October 14, 2011 in Reel Therapy
For most of the current season the "Housewives of NJ" a boiling interpersonal feud has taken center stage. It's too bad it has taken the whole season to figure out why the feud happened in the first place.

One of the Most Unhappy Periods of My Life Led to My Happiest

By Gretchen Rubin on October 14, 2011 in The Happiness Project
I've always thought that funny writing doesn't get the respect it deserves. As G. K. Chesterton observed, "It is easy to be heavy: hard to be light." In fact, it's very, very, very hard to be light.

Living the Game: Fans in Love, Players at Work

Psychological pressures increase the amount that fans love their teams. The pressures on players push them in the opposite direction. Here's why players play the game but fans live it.

No. 1 Reason Practice Makes Perfect

By Christopher Bergland on October 13, 2011 in The Athlete's Way
The brain science of muscle memory

My Teenager Is a Nervous Wreck

By Barbara Greenberg Ph.D. on October 11, 2011 in The Teen Doctor
What to do when you feel like your teenager takes life much too seriously.

Mom Liked You Best

By Ellen Weber Libby Ph.D. on October 04, 2011 in The Favorite Child

Women and Selfishness

By Noam Shpancer Ph.D. on October 02, 2011 in Insight Therapy
Women in particular appear vulnerable to the trap of confusing self-care with selfishness. But self-care is not selfish. In fact, it's necessary for our ability to care well for others.

The Beauty of Sport and Why I Love Arsenal

By Michael W. Austin Ph.D. on September 28, 2011 in Ethics for Everyone
What is most important in sport--beauty or victory? Why not both?

"No Wedding No Womb" Might Save Lives--Are We Content With That?

By Mikhail Lyubansky Ph.D. on September 27, 2011 in Between the Lines
What does it mean to put the needs of children first? What does it mean to be emotionally, physically, and financially able to care for them? More importantly, who gets to decide?


By Walter E. Block Ph.D. on September 26, 2011 in Defending the Undefendable
Steven E. Landsburg, political economic maverick extraordinaire, and supposed advocate of free enterprise, has written a paper on theft and externalities entitled "Property Is Theft: When protecting your own property is stealing from others."

Why Sports Programs Don't Belong in High Schools and Colleges

By Ugo Uche on September 20, 2011 in Promoting Empathy With Your Teen
"The idea of working in a professional field as a college student should constitute an internship, where the student’s compensation is considered quality experience earned, or compensation in the form of a scholarship for tuition fees."

The Simplest Way to Reduce Stress

By Vikki Stark M.S.W., M.F.T. on September 14, 2011 in Schlepping Through Heartbreak
Here’s a very simple suggestion that makes a huge difference in reducing stress. Whatever you’re doing, don’t rush. That’s it. Don’t rush. That means that you schedule enough time to get wherever you’re going ten minutes early.

Strength Training Using Motor Imagery

By Alan Fogel on September 12, 2011 in Body Sense
Paying attention to your body while working out can increase cardiovascular fitness, strength and agility, and fat metabolism. A study published in August 2011 in the journal Frontiers in Movement Science and Sports Psychology adds another way in which body sense can enhance your workout: by imagining muscle contraction in place of actually doing some of the reps.

What's Wrong with Fantasy Football?

By Michael W. Austin Ph.D. on September 06, 2011 in Ethics for Everyone
Fantasy football is good in some ways, and bad in others. What should we make of this recent phenomenon?

Rich Girl, Poor Girl: Can Their Friendship Survive?

Can women of different social status or socio-economic background sustain a healthy, non-competitive, equal friendship?

Anxiety and Second Generation Amotivation

Why don't your children feel motivated?

The Golden Psi: Psychology Goes to the Movies

By Jeremy Clyman Psy.D. on August 30, 2011 in Reel Therapy
Everyone who is interested in movies and psychology should know about the Golden Psi Media Award. Everyone who is anyone, that is.

Steve Jobs's Success: Not Just Technological, but Psychological

By Allen R McConnell Ph.D. on August 25, 2011 in The Social Self
The resignation of Apple CEO Steve Jobs provides an opportunity to reflect on the psychology underlying his success. During a speech at Stanford, Jobs demonstrated a clear and compelling understanding of human nature and how to live life. We all may not be able to be billionaires who change the world, but we can take stock in the lessons learned by those who are.

How to Enhance Communication Between the Sexes: The Androgynous Bridge Part II

You might think of gender-flexing as a way to strengthen and tone your nonverbal muscles. After all, nonverbal behaviors are in great part centered in the body. We all have masculine and feminine nonverbal behaviors at our disposal—it’s just a matter of using these oft-ignored “muscles.”

Is Violent Sport Cathartic?

Many people believe that violent sport is cathartic. There is good evidence that they are wrong.