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Practice Practice Practice

Since last year when I put my chess books down, and my chess board back in the closet, I have only been doing tactical puzzles occationally at best. Last year when I was playing again for the first time in a long time, I was very frusterated that my tactical vision was not improving. But I was studying the wrong way. If I got a problem wrong, I would simply view the solution, rather than try and try again until I got it. I wasn't pausing the videos to look for the best move like they always tell you to. I wasn't doing tactics regularly enough to make a difference.

Though I don't have much of a chance to play a real game these days, the 10-20 minutes I get in little breaks throughout the day are helping me stay sharp. I also started legitimately drilling tactics at night when I'm at home (this is not an advertisement, but the chessimo application for the iPad is great for drilling pattern recognition). I'm seeing more than I ever have before. Strategy is important, very important, but maybe its true that chess is 99% tactics (90% perspiration and 10% inspiration?). I know its more than what I've been giving it for most of my life, and that's different now and I like it.

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