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Sick of traditional opening study? Try this!

Sick of traditional opening study? Try this!

Sep 12, 2012, 4:19 PM 1

At some point in our development, we must study openings. When I hear the word study, a vision comes to mind of a student huddled in a corner desk reading, understanding, and remembering all of the information inside a book. This traditional method certainly has both its place and merit. In fact if that is your preferred method then I suggest following that course of action. For others who prefer to venture outside the box, the following may be the study plan you need to adopt to improve your opening play.

Every morning after waking, I make myself a bit of coffee(preferably a medium bodied Guatemalan roast). While that is brewing I fire up my computer and place my stack of opening books nearby. I scroll through my Ipod in search for today’s ”study music” which, depending on the mood, could be heavy metal, classic rock, or hip-hop. Once that inspiration is found I slip on my headphones, sip my coffee, log in to Chess.com, and then proceed to play blitz for the next hour.

That’s right, blitz. The reason for this is to expose myself to an array of different positions. The difference between myself and your casual blitzer is that after each game I go against my natural instinct of clicking “Rematch” or “New Game.” Instead I revert to the start of the game and cross reference my opening play with my opening books. I go over the relevant information from the game as it relates to the game I just played. I find out what I did right and what I did wrong so the next time I am in that position, I am ready.

For me this is a much better way of studying because I am the type of person that learns more from doing and rather than reading. My goal is to incrementally build my opening knowledge base by learning one new concept every blitz game. The most important aspect of this study process is that it is active and fun. So if you’re sick of your current study habits, try this and blitz your way towards learning!


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