Coach Of The Month: IM Levy Rozman
Meet our latest coach of the month: IM Levy Rozman

Coach Of The Month: IM Levy Rozman‎

SamCopeland
NM SamCopeland
|
6 | Chess Players

Chess.com's newest coach of the month is IM Levy Rozman.

Rozman is familiar to streaming fans, as his Twitch.tv/gothamchess channel is one of the largest and most successful on Twitch. Rozman brings a unique wit, humor and troll-shaming to the platform. Rozman is also known for his commentary on the official Chess.com Twitch channel, where he's commented on major events like the PRO Chess League and Titled Tuesday.

Rozman runs scholastic chess programs is New York (where he gets the Gotham in "gothamchess") and is a successful tournament player, with many city and state tournament championships to his name.

Readers seeking private instruction can contact Levy Rozman via his Chess.com profile (@gothamchess) and can find other skilled coaches at Chess.com/coaches.


Interview with Rozman:

Chess.com: At what age were you introduced to chess, and who introduced you?

My parents wanted to sign me up for after-school activities at age six. Mom pushed for chess, while Dad insisted on arts and crafts, since I was a wild kid and "would never sit still long enough." They decided to put me in both classes, but I would sneak out on art class and run around on the playground. Chess...stuck, however.

What is your first vivid memory from chess?

At the Susan Polgar Chess Club in Forest Hills, New York—after a heated game, my opponent threw a knight at my face.

Which coaches were helpful in your chess career, and what was the most useful knowledge they imparted to you?

Artur Jussupow—but not for the reasons you might think. When I was nine, Artur booted me from his chess camp for misbehaving. To this day, I regret behaving the way I did, and in many ways it straightened me out.

Which game do you consider your masterpiece?

Cordova-Rozman, World Open 2018. Probably the game that encapsulates my style and creativity—and accuracy, in this case—as much as any game I ever played.

How would you describe your approach to chess coaching?

In one word: eclectic. I am very keen on first identifying strengths and weaknesses of my students, and providing them with a bespoke and practical study plan. I draw my resources from many sources, and I plan a few steps ahead with all of my recommendations (openings, middlegames). The best analogy is that of a barrel: You cannot add liquid (knowledge) at the top if there are holes at the bottom.

What do you consider your responsibilities as a coach, and which responsibilities fall on your student?

A coach should diagnose, recommend, and be as detailed and thorough as possible. A student should be diligent and not afraid to speak up—not knowing something in chess is good.

What advice do you give your students that you think more chess players could benefit from?

"Let's pretend our opponents aren't idiots." Don't come up with simple plans, and dig deeper into the position.

What is your favorite teaching game that users might not have seen?

What puzzle do you give students that tells you the most about how they think?

I like to hear my students' plans hear for both colors. The position is very fluid and imbalanced, so it is good to hear everything they come up with.

The solution is Nd5-b6, rerouting to the queenside and opening pressure against White's d3-pawn. Therein lies a wild fight. This was Liem-Rozman, one of my games. I think it is fantastic for middlegame training.

Do you prefer to teach online or offline? What do you think is different about teaching online?

Definitely online. The scheduling is more flexible, there are more resources available at hand, and no setup is required. With my style, I keep my students engaged on a call.

What do you consider the most valuable training tool that the internet provides?

Obviously the Chess.com "coach of the month" article!

Which underappreciated chess book should every chess player read?

Game Changer by GM Matthew Sadler and WIM Natasha Regan—not really underappreciated, but a very modern take on chess.


Prior coach of the month winners:

More from NM SamCopeland
GM Larry Kaufman Interview: 'New Repertoire For Black And White'

GM Larry Kaufman Interview: 'New Repertoire For Black And White'

Coach Of The Month: Colin Stapczynski

Coach Of The Month: Colin Stapczynski