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I believe that you need to define your objectives very well and if you want to improve, you really first have to be absolutely convinced that you want it. I do not take this lightly. I manage big sales teams and the single biggest stumbling block is between their ears. They need to want to be successful in their job and go for stretch goals. It takes years for smart people to see the light and really convince themselves that they can be exceptional winners. I like the example of the guy that consistently wins the 100 meter sprint from 10 other pros, by a difference of a couple hundreds of a second. By a difference of almost nothing. It is because he is invincible in his mind...
I am sure that chess is the same. I know it because I play it for fun, not for the points, not to become a great player... You need to make sure that you are extremely clear on what you want and how hard you want it..or not
I have just last year studied tactics every day and have improved from 1500 to 1700. I also am learning opening repetroir for d4 and defences against d4 and this has helped me play with confidence. I have also been teaching a 1200 player how to improve using this formula and his game has improved greatly.
@linlaoda: there are a lot of ways to do it, but the key is take a very complicated position and write down everything you can. Then you compare your variations against the annotations.
Writing down all of the variations you calculate forces you to organize your thinking.
There are lots of variables you can play with, like whether you have a time limit or if you can move the pieces. I kind of do my own thing with the exercise -- sometimes I won't use time controls and will move the pieces, sometimes I'll give myself 10 minutes and can't move the pieces.
No matter how you do it, it helps hone in on problems with your thought process, like not considering enough candidates, not considering enough candidates for your opponent, mis-evaluating positions, etc. Knowing the strengths and weaknesses in your thought process is huge.
I would add if you are unable to play many OTB tournaments, the next best thing is online chess.
I was dubious at first. I have never played correspondence chess in my life. I cannot say enough about it however. What I do, is I keep an actual board beside me to work out the analysis. This comes closest to simulating a real OTB game. Of course in the latter, you aren't moving the pieces, but the visualiaztion is the same. If you have the self-discipline not to move the pieces. All the better.
A well planned online game, is worth a 1000 blitz or bullets games. That's my opinion.
hey linaoda, i happened to come across a book titled "true lies in chess" by Lluis Comas Fabrego and it kinda open my eyes to simple theories and principles in chess that i have totally believed in before but kinda made me re-think now. Especially when it comes to understanding, by threading through the analysis and perception of certain masters about how they approach the game.How they think that puts them above other contemporaries , the one that makes "real chess strength" (the main reason i made a post about it). Im very impressed as to how each master come to almost same conclusions but different paths. Things that make me question if either its "innate ability" or talent. How each move is accurately chosen besides the fact that they have good sight of the board. Knowing ow they do it would greatly help all of us in our pursuit to chess advancement.(my thoughts though)
I agree that tactics and openings are important but there have been many young people in chess, 10 year olds, maybe younger--Bobby Fischer, Sammy Reshevsky, Paul Morphy are examples--who have become masters even tho at their age they have not had time to learn all that much. So what is the underlying secret? I believe it is approach, that is what they think about and how they look at the board. Find the correct approach and I believe one can become master!
Hi. I used to play chess and high school and the MonRoi Personal Chess Manager was my favorite tool. Helped me learn a lot. I have one for sale on ebay for cheap if anyone's interested. Gotta pay the rent. Lol
All you people who are reading books and doing tactics and studying openings...This is all good, but the thing is you will not improve at a significant rate in terms of time. If you really want to improve significantly you have to go to over the board tournaments. There is no other substitute. Even if you play long games online it won't be the same as an otb tournament. You guys might think what's the difference if i play the same time control games online or otb I should be learning the same things. But otb tournaments have a discussion element and an observation element along with the playing element. Let me elaborate: first the most obvious way you are learning is playing your opponents otb with greater focus and interest than online. This is because you are spending money to be at the tournament, you might be trying to win a prize, you are risking rating, etc. The next place you learn from is through a post mortem analysis of games with your opponent where you can understand how they are thinking this is especially nice if you end up playing masters in your tournament because you basically getting "free lessons" from someone stronger than you instead of paying for coaching. The next good part about otb tournaments is bonds. You make friends with people who are interested in the same hobby as you and this means you might have discussions about various chess ideas which could also improve your results. I have had many discussions about interesting opening ideas and they are always enlightening. Finally, you aren't the only one playing in an otb tournament; there are many people who will be at the tournament you go to and you'll all be playing at the same time. This is a great opportunity to look at the games of others and absorb different opening preperations or ideas which you could implement in your own games at a later date.
well I know this is a bit long, but I Ultimately think if you want to improve in the most significant and timely way you have to play in OTB tournaments.
I agree with all of that and I really enjoyed the few OTB tournament I went.
That being said, I expect all of that from chess.com:
1) When I play at turn-base, I think. And I expect to win.
2) We rarely analyse the game, but I do it with computer
Hopefully we can do that with the forum
3) I watch games also
Fully agree Nick.
Used to play blitz for a long time. It was fun, but I believe one do not progress.
I discivered here, one year or so ago, the turn based games, and I find it great.
That's the best proxy (and I find it less "boring", hate to wait) to OTB real time control games.
It is much more beneficial to analyze your games extensively without an engine first, and then to use the engine to verify your analysis and show you what you missed.
Yes, and I'm starting to wonder when that verification should come. After a few hours? After a week? Maybe after you've worked on your own analysis multiple times. Maybe a few months? I'm starting to wonder maybe never actually
Still haven't deleted my chess program yet, it probably is a good tool as long as you use it correctly. Lately I've been wondering what correctly is though heh.
I tend to use the engine immediately after I've finished my own analysis, which generally takes an hour or more to do. I haven't tried multiple analysis sessions before and deferring computer analysis till later, but that's an interesting idea. I would certainly see more in a second analysis session, or a third, but I wonder where the point of diminishing returns lies and the cost in terms of time is no longer outweighed by the increasingly small benefits. Do you find benefit in analyzing the same games again and again? I'd be curious to hear your practices (or anybody else's experience in analysis, for that matter).
Who is "they"???
They is a very dagerous lot and not to be tiffled with.
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