3 Ways to Improve Your Chess During the COVID-19 Outbreak

3 Ways to Improve Your Chess During the COVID-19 Outbreak

CM Chessdemon2019

Hello online chess players! The Coronavirus Disease 2019, shortened to COVID-19, is a pandemic that has been affecting many chess players, most likely you too. OTB games and tournaments are mostly cancelled due to the fear of a chess player having the virus, which will allow the virus to spread.

Most of you already know about this disease. Probably not many of you know how to improve your skills during the quarantine. I've planned out my chess schedule and have a few tips to share with everyone in the chess community, and to everyone who is willing to read this! Here are 3 tips about how to improve your chess online.

1. Make a Schedule

Schedule how much time you will allocate for chess every day. I usually allocate 3 hours for chess every day during the quarantine. Maybe your time differs, but it is always good to manage your time and use your chess time wisely. There are many different ways that you can make a schedule, but make one that gives you sufficient time to satisfy yourself. Puzzles are always good for improvement, so here are a few. Take your time.

This was one of Paul Morphy's puzzles that is extremely famous. Mate in 2.

This puzzle, known as Plaskett's puzzle, is said to be one of the hardest puzzles in history. James Plaskett (hence the puzzle's name) presented this puzzle to the public in 1987. White to move and win.

Puzzles (especially these ones) are tough and exercise your brain. Give yourself a pat on the back if you got both of them right. Puzzles, alongside with playing live games and game analysis should form your schedule. Personally, I need to add in some time for writing these articles for all of you reading.

Making a schedule is extremely important when you are at home and trying to improve your chess. Time management is key. Learn to manage your time and you will have an improvement path carved out for you.

2. Think of What is Good For Your Chess

It might seem easy to understand at first, but it is best for you to schedule time for things you want to do and what you should do. We still play chess for fun after all. However, when your tactics brain is not sharp enough, or maybe you are on a tilt, you should avoid doing tactics and playing games for a short time and decide to analyse some games.

Your schedule does not have to be fixed. I just needs flexibility to satisfy what you need to do. A lot of people do the thing that they are worse at temporarily to improve their chess, like doing tactics when your tactics brain can't work.

Your brain is a muscle. It needs a workout, but after it is tired, it just can't work anymore. Instead of lifting your weaknesses up, concentrate on what your brain thinks is less tiring. I have done this multiple times; I've been on tilts, couldn't solve puzzles and just got tired for some time. With the outbreak in place, many people have so much more time to spend on their hobbies. 

White to move and win

Did you solve it? If you did, you should be proud of yourself, but you can also note that your brain is suited for tactics right now.

Seeing what is good and what is bad for your brain, not for your chess, is the way to improve. With the outbreak going on, you will have enough time to plan out your schedule and exercise your brain!

3. Analyse Openings

This is something that is hard to do unless you have massive amounts of time, like now. Because of the outbreak, many people that used to struggle with opening preparation now have the time to start analysing openings. Here is one piece of my analysis that I did during the outbreak.

If you make sure that you spend your time wisely during the outbreak, you chess skills will improve drastically. Make sure that you will follow a schedule and figure out when is the time to do what. Play your best, have fun and hope your chess improves!

Thanks for reading!

CM Chessdemon2019

P.S check out my blog https://www.chess.com/blog/chessdemon2019

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