V01: What to think about during a chess game

V01: What to think about during a chess game

Jul 15, 2016, 12:09 PM |

As one may see I am far from playing at a grandmaster’s level. However, these blogs are documenting ideas I try to implement into my own gameplay.


Blunder avoidance: 

The first problem I faced after my 20 year break from chess were blunders. To assist me I searched the www and found a clip somewhere, where a grandmaster (I can't find the video any more, if someone knows whose checklist this is please send me a message!) provided an easy solution. He analysed games of his students and realised that most blunders could be avoided by performing these steps before making a move:


  1. Dap control: Is either a double attack or pin possible?  (of course this is not suitable for absolute beginners, hanging pieces may be an issue for them, too)
  2. Main line check: Are the moves of the main line forced moves or at least the most probable? Is my position really better afterwards?
  3. Checkmate check: Can I be checkmated?

If not too tired, this checklist also works in blitz, since you only have to check the things that change every move.


Reduce time pressure

The second problem (especially in fast paced games) I faced was time - or the non-existence of it after thinking too long. This helped me a lot: 

"Basically I divide my thinking into two parts: When my opponent's clock is going, I discuss general considerations in an internal dialogue with myself. When my clock is going, I analyse concrete variations."




This article will be updated in the future (v02, ...). Thanks to Steve for cross reading it!