I believe Bill's perspective (in Part I) to be a very enlightened one. Not only have I seen this second click happen to my own kids, but I have seen it happen as an educator, coach, and athlete in others as well. Being personally involved with students and athletes in these capacities gives one the opportunity to see such things.
And there is something else Mr. Wells brings out in his piece. It is a point that has a substantial amount of truth to it, the idea that "not every athlete clicks a second time." I can attest to seeing many kids not ever achieve this second click. They just don't seem to integrate themselves into their sports experience as do some others.
However, as intriguing as all of this is to me, what I like most about this article (after his thought-provoking and well-assessed explanation of the first and second clicks of an athlete) is the question Bill asks at the end of the article. The query with definite inference that there is something more:
"Is there a third click?"
My answer is an emphatic...YES, I believe that there is. But there are very few who actually get to this third click.
And how might one tell that an athlete has clicked a third time?
It can be difficult to determine this since both a second and third click athlete are willing to work hard, put forth extra effort at practice, and even spend individual time working on making themselves better. But there is a difference, a profound variance not easily seen when looking from the outside.
It is demonstrated more in an athlete's willingness to take everything their sport requires of them (their skill set) to a much higher level, a level of mastery. Not only does an athlete who has clicked a third time go out and practice on their own, they do it with a much deeper sense of purpose than does the second click athlete.
Their perspective is one of trying to reach a level beyond what others can see, a point where movement becomes more instinctive and less thought out. They set daily goals - objectives, and they reach those objectives or they don't leave practice, and/or go in early to finish them. They are always working toward improving themselves a little bit each and every day, trying to climb that ladder of success one rung at a time - a ladder few will ever attempt to climb.
These select few, the ones who make this third click, they are the best of the best, the cream of the crop, the ones who exist at the highest levels of their particular event and/or sport, the ones that everyone else is chasing, and that most aspire to be.
Yes, Bill, I do believe that there is a third click, that's for sure. It's just that not too many on the outside recognize when it occurs, only those closest to the athlete know. Their the only ones that see the above process as it happens.
Thanks Bill, what a great thought-provoking piece!!!