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How to get better with OTB chess?


  • 9 months ago · Quote · #1

    MonkeyH

    Hi there, I have recently started playing chess( 3 month's ago), I only knew the rules before then and played two games in real life.

    Now I'm playing chess more seriously and I'm a new member of the local chess club now. But I seem to lose every on the board match I have. Somehow there is a disconnection between playing online chess and playing on the board. The ratings in our club is pretty diverse, from 800 to 2000+. I don't mind losing but I seem to be stuck in on the board games. Most of my games I lose somewhere in the middle-game by blundering pieces.

    Does anyone know how to improve my on the board chess play? 

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #2

    Wilbert_78

    Less openings, more tactics ;) Focus on pins, hidden attacks, discovered checks etc. But, you are becoming better in our games.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #3

    MonkeyH

    @Danica that's a good tip, how should I improve my chess without computers, just playing over games on the board?

    @Wilbert, yeah I started with a lot of tactics training ( and also for some reason chess mentor is really easy, how do I get 1573 rating there I'm very surprised but I find the moves fast). But for some reason I see these tactics a lot easier in computer chess.
    Also why I started playing blitz, to become more tactical, and some opening choices as well ( sokolsky and king's gambit). 

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #4

    Wilbert_78

    So get an 1800 rating there :D Blitz is fun, but I am still of the school that thinks it won't benefit you while you are still learning and developing the pattern-recognition. If you have a bit of money to spend, the official method from the ksnb comes in a do-it-yourself version "lekker schaken'. Those are 5 (small) books with good instructions and puzzels. Ranging from the very basics in book 1 to master level in book 5. I'm almost done with book 3 now. Nice things about these books are the instructions. Very well written.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #5

    MonkeyH

    Yes but I'm off the school that blitz helps with pattern recognition because it's more about attacking, combinations and sacrifices, by using lesser sound openings for example. But how to convert that knowledge the best to OTB chess is my difficulty.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #6

    odyson

    "Not every artist is a chessplayer, but every chessplayer is an artist." Duchamp

    I believe you are familiar with the idea of studying the old masters. My fascination with chess began when I became aware of the creative artistry in the games of Alekhine. You could do worse than choosing a master and becoming a disciple.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #7

    RoelofN

    Wilbert_78 schreef:

    Less openings, more tactics ;)

    ^^

    These are 90 minute +10 sec each matches, try to make the most of it. Ofcourse taking too much time can also result in poor decision making, but I think the rapid time and speed in online chess might be forming bad habits (which are the hardest to correct).

    The pace is set higher in online chess because there's not 'much at stake'. It's a good way to practice and get comfortable with your opening, yet 30 minutes each imho isn't enough to thoroughly plan the whole game. When I'm playing online I actually feel encouraged to plan shorter and quicker compared to an OTB game.

    I Blunder the most when my time is running out, when the auto-pilot takes over or when I lose my focus. Try to carefully analyse each piece of the board every turn. Especially when you're winning, your opponent will search for an oppertunity in your game so be absolutely sure about the risks you're taking. Make no exceptions and never assume. A losing player can still sacrifice his pieces.

    During my play, either winning or losing, I'm always convinced there are threats and oppertunities in both games which I haven't found yet, while my opponent has. I don't bother re-thinking the game every turn, even if my opponent responds the way I expected.

    There's plenty of time.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #8

    JavaTigress

    Hey, Monkey. For what it is worth, I find that the same principles you would use to play online are the exact same ones that you would use over the board. The main difference being that you can actually SEE your opponant, which does add a bit of a wrinkle, but not too much of one. My best advice, for what it is worth, is to focus on the pieces on the board and move them as you would in an online game.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #9

    MCBeaker

    For most beginners blitz won't teach them tactics or pattern recognition. That comes from studied practise. Lots of practise! 

    I play regular OTB games in local leagues. My recommendation, based on my personal experience (having followed the advice of my predecessors!), is to use Tactics Trainer, with the timer turned off, and concentrate on getting the puzzles correct.

    Of course, some actual instruction in basic tactics is needed first - book, Chess Mentor, whatever takes your fancy.

    A mere 10-15 minutes per day will make a dramatic difference. It's not sexy, it's not a magic bullet for instant chess improvement, but it does seem to work Smile

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #10

    MonkeyH

    Hi! Sorry that everybody thinks it's all about missing tactics or such. But my problem is more psychological, aside from the problems a different board vision (2d/3d) brings I feel like I just give up somewhere in the middle game when I see one blunder made by me. Even though I play on, it's hard to battle that mental aspect of the game.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #11

    JavaTigress

    It does seem to me like it is mainly phsychological. I am not quite certain what the cause is, though... did you first start learning chess online, Monkey? If I can ask.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #12

    Yaroslavl

    MonkeyH wrote:

    Hi there, I have recently started playing chess( 3 month's ago), I only knew the rules before then and played two games in real life.

    Now I'm playing chess more seriously and I'm a new member of the local chess club now. But I seem to lose every on the board match I have. Somehow there is a disconnection between playing online chess and playing on the board. The ratings in our club is pretty diverse, from 800 to 2000+. I don't mind losing but I seem to be stuck in on the board games. Most of my games I lose somewhere in the middle-game by blundering pieces.Does anyone know how to improve my on the board chess play? 

    _______________________________

    I believe that the solution for your OTB problem is cupping your hands around your eyes. Just like blinders for horses. It will concentrate your eyesight on the board which is similar to how the Internet diagram appears on the screen.

    Concerning improving your tactics. There are 5 visualization pattern memory banks that you must build into your brain. The 5 are:

    1.Tactics visualization pattern memory bank

    2.Mating Net visualization pattern memory bank

    3.Endgame visualization pattern memory bank

    4.Opening visualization pattern memory bank

    5.Middlegame visualization pattern memory bank

    At your stage in chess development you need to concentrate on Tactics and Mating Net visualization pattern memory bank exercises. I guarantee you that after a month of doing the tactics exercises what will happen when you are analyzing any position, the tactic will jump up off the board and smack you on the forehead in flash!!

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #13

    TheGreatOogieBoogie

    What Yaroslavl refers to is chunking.  De Groot and others did research and found that grandmasters have over 200,000 chunks (or patterns) stored to memory.  Chunking suppliments understanding and thinking process. 

    Why do you place pieces where they can be taken for free?  I think it's due to hope chess and you don't see if the opponent can refute your move.  If a line leaves you worse off that's a good reason to question it. 

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #14

    MCBeaker

    Perhaps we all went down the tactics route as you said "Most of my games I lose somewhere in the middle-game by blundering pieces."? Smile

    As to the psychological / OTB aspects...

    • I wear a baseball cap during OTB games. Helps keep my vision on the board, and I can zone out the human sat opposite.
    • Control any prejudices! One of our leagues has a childrens' club. Players are ~ 8yrs and older. They're coached by a GM, play quickly (which I find offputting) and can be deadly! But, they *can* be beaten Cool
    • I ignore / don't ask my opponent their rating. All that matters are the moves we both play during that game. I *have* beaten opponents rated much higher than me.
    • If (when Embarassed) I blunder, I make sure my next moves are made VERY slowly and deliberately. It's easy to follow one blunder with another!
    • Not an OTB issue per se, but I suggest that you don't give up due to a blunder; your opponent could well become overconfident. Don't get mad - get even Smile 

    OTB play is very different to online play and can take some getting used to. There are a lot more distractions, but the more you experience it, the easier it gets. I like it.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #15

    Yaroslavl

    @MCBeaker

    Thanks I forgot about the baseball cap and the other suggestions. The baseball cap also keeps your OTB opponent from seeing what part of the board your eyes are concentrating on.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #16

    clunney

    Preventing your opponent seeing what part of the board your eyes are on? How will this help you make better moves? Ridiculous suggestion, lol.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #17

    Yaroslavl

    clunney wrote:

    Preventing your opponent seeing what part of the board your eyes are on? How will this help you make better moves? Ridiculous suggestion, lol.

    ______________________

    You need to practice looking before you leap. No one wrote that wearing a baseball cap is going to improve the quality of your moves. It seems that is what you interpreted from what you read. And, it is understandable because words are like crystals, you turn them one way and they "mean" one thing - you turn them another way and they "mean" something completely different.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #18

    Bardu

    MonkeyH, these are common problems encountered by beginners.

    First of all, if your goal is to improve at OTB chess, you will need to gain experience OTB.

    Secondly, you need to have a strategy for learning chess, and its not really subjective. You need to gain a basic skill set for chess. The suggestions above are good. You need to practice basic tactics. I've spent five years on ChessTempo and I'm still learning, so be patient!

    Also, blitz does not help you much at this point. And as a beginner you run the dangerous risk of ingraining bad habits. I would play longer games (45/45 shouldn't be too hard to find) which will help you develop better visualization. Take all your time.

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #19

    MonkeyH

    Yes, that's why I joined the chess club to get OTB play. But indeed I need to play more OTB besides the club. I have a couple of friends which I can play against it but I like to keep it diverse.

    I'm worrying about that myself, what's the best way to study chess? Watching opening video's, practising tactics and positional play and go over top games? I do that now but somehow I find it hard to keep a structure in my learning process.

    Yes, I started blitz because I was taking too long to mate my opponents (missing a lot of mates) and I thought that would help shorten it, it did but as you said it has given me some bad habits. I play way too fast OTB for instance. But I find it hard to slow down and relax at the club. 

  • 9 months ago · Quote · #20

    RoelofN

    Perhaps we could start playing Fischer random chess to see how that works out 


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