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Many of us have crammed for exams, burning the midnight oil, drinking gallons of coffee, taking the morning test, all with the brilliant plan of forgetting everything memorized a few days later. Stupid, but we have done it.
I've heard of studies done to figure out how many times the brain needs to see something so that it can be retrieved at any time in one's life at the drop of a hat, with no further review required.
Anyone know what the number of repetitions is required for something to stick forever? How often per day, and for how many days, until things such as tactical and mating patterns stick in our squishy grey matter, available for instant recall?
I have no idea how many times I saw the patterns below, but I do know that I will never forget them. 10, 100, 1000 times?
Imediately after watching a chess.com video on C31: King's Gambit: Falkbeer Countergambit, Nimzowitsch-Marshall Countergambit, I was lucky enough to see the King's Gambit the next day in Live Chess, and won by checkmate in 9 moves. Even before the chess.com video on this defense for Black, I knew the winning pattern, and again, I'm not sure how many times I saw it, but I just know I won't forget it.
Wow! I solved the first one in less than ten seconds.Of course, I've taught it to youth players dozens of times. I've also seen it played in youth tournaments.
Anyone know what the number of repetitions is required for something to stick forever?
I totally agree that effective repetition is very important to retain information from the short term memory to the long term memory. I'm no expert on it but I have read a few things about it. You might want to look at for example the work done by Tony Buzan. There he recommends recapping information on the following timescale:
24 hours/1 week/1 month/3 months/6 months/ 1 year.
Especially important are the initial recapping of information in the early stages. Also vital is how something is learnt in the first place.
I don't think rote learning is a good way to improve playing chess. And it would take away the fun element too. Solving tactics and studying the beautiful games of the masters (specially annotated) is the best method IMHO.
Depends on the complexity of the pattern, your ability to link it with previous knowledge and the emotional involvment when learning (you'll never forget a mating pattern if there are 20 persons gathered around your board at this very moment...).
It may also depends on your age and overall cognitive ability.
I'd say between 1 and 6-7 repetitions.
There is no set number, but if you set yourself to redo the same tactics problems 4-7 times, and with at least one month between each occurrence, the ideas (patterns) in each problem should sink in.
Not surprisingly, there is some theory on the matter:
Now that link looks familiar.
Haha, I guess I couldn't be bothered to read back four posts before chiming in.
It's a good link, maybe more people will see it. There are plenty of chess applications out there making use of the idea of spaced repetition these days, too (Chess Position Trainer, Lucas Chess).
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