Making sense of generational arguments about skill development

I don’t understand the following argument:

“Players from previous generations had more skill.”

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“Players from previous generations were three-sport athletes.”

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“Players from previous generations played more pickup games.”

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“Players need to specialize earlier and train privately with individual coaches to improve their skills.” […]

The cost of overcoaching

When I was younger and nobody took me seriously (before my books, PhD, and professional experience), I made two comments on a Yahoo! coach’s forum that generated plenty of derision from the other members. The first was that we should coach players as if we were preparing them to play pickup games on the playground. The second was that many coaches would have a more positive effect on their teams if they walked into practice, dropped a ball at center court, and left the building, allowing the players to organize themselves and scrimmage.  […]

Keeping Score & Changing Youth Sports

More and more, I think we blame the wrong things for the problems evident in youth sports. For instance, everyone blames AAU for everything bad about basketball, yet school teams often employ the same tactics. With young athletes, we often blame keeping score for the issues that arise. Neil Swidey writes about the issues of Read more about Keeping Score & Changing Youth Sports[…]