For All You "Crazy" Craig's Out There...
If you have no clue what the title of this blog is about, please click here
If you don't know what the image is about, please do yourself a favor and watch Parks and Rec and/or click here
Now that we have that out of the way, how do we get better at positional chess and endgames? Answer: from studying of course! (sorry no shortcuts here). If you're like me, you enjoy studying tactics, dazzling attacks, and even crazy opening variations (like the yugoslav Dragon, Botvinnik variation of the Semi-Slav, Traxler counterattack, etc). How do you make studying the "other side" of chess more fun?
Great question! That's what this blog is all about. But why do you need to make studying fun? When what you study is enjoyable, it sticks with you much longer than when you are forcing yourself to study. Also studying just to study does very little for the would-be student. It's much more important to know WHY the moves are played as opposed to just the moves in the first place.
Tips to make studying more fun and beneficial
- Find Endgames and/or Strategic Lessons From Your Own Games:
Nobody likes losing and/or playing subpar moves. If you find a way you could have improved your own play, it really sticks with you longer than studying theoretical positions or other player's endgames.
How did I lose such a game? Time pressure you might think, and yes that's somewhat true. But the real reason is inexperience in the endgame (I was a teenager at the time of the game). I did not even know the idea of needing to create a passed pawn ASAP in those types of endgames. But what I did learn was I needed to study these endgames or else this type of loss would keep coming around.
2. Go over "entertaining" studies
If you can't solve the below study, don't be afraid to just check out the answer. It's VERY tough!