How to Improve from 800-1300 Final

How to Improve from 800-1300 Final

Aug 28, 2014, 2:05 PM |

Hello friends, opponents, and viewers to the last blog on the series "How to Improve from 800-1300" We've covered the three P's and the three T's so far and if you've missed those two please check them out. In this blog we'll be covering the most important tip in the three G's! Let's learn and see how we can improve from our old 800, 900, 1000, 1100, or even 1200 to 1300+! The first G is about having fun, learning, and getting to get to know the game better. It's the Game!

I think it’s very natural to get nervous. I’ve usually got concerns about a specific thing in the opening which might worry me. I have to be relaxed and balanced emotionally and then I can concentrate on the moves during the game. Then things will be ok.  -  Judit Polgar

When you sit down to play a game of Chess your mind should be focused on every move and every important variation you see. You should be watching out for your opponent's plans, making sure your going for yours, and displaying true Chess skills. When you finish a game, regardless if it's a win or a loss you should go over each move again and look to see if you missed a tactic, capture, check, etc. This will improve your thought and clear any doubt in the moves ahead in future games.

If you won, look to see if there was a faster way to win, a tactic that you missed in the excitement, or maybe something that your opponent could have played to ruin your attack. If the game was decided by time, the computer is a good program to use to try and finish the game to see where it might have led.  If you loss you should look at where you went wrong, if there were any passive moves, and if you missed a way to stop your opponent's attack.

The next G should be put at every game, every tournament, and every move. What is my goal for that specific moment? I was recently in a tournament and started at 1357, my 2 goals were to either win 1st in my group or pass 1400. I was blessed with both goals and was excited to say the least. In games you need to set goals, maybe that's removing White's fianchettoed bishop, or moving up 10 rating points. These simple goals with help you improve because you'll see the improvement. Just make sure your making reasonable goals because if you’re trying to become a GM in a night it's not going to happen ;) 

Man is a frivolous, a specious creature, and like a Chess player, cares more for the process of attaining his goal than the goal itself.  - Fyodor  Dostoyevsky

Our last and most important tip in the entire series has arrived. I strongly urge anyone and everyone to follow this goal if you are under 1300. The most important tip is to gauge how many games of Chess you play, Maybe that sounds totally ridicules but it's true, if you have 200+ games not only will you not be able to truly focus on each game and spend the time needed to use all the tips we talked about but your rating will stay where you are because your spending all the time making moves. I've seen players here who have played 1000+ games and have been on here for over 2 years, yet are still lower then 1300. Look at how many games I've played in Online Chess. I just finished my 170th game a few days ago and don't play too many. It's important to focus on each move and see what you can do with your pieces rather than just making what seems like the best move. If you play less than 12 games then all you need is to follow the tips I suggested, if you’re playing over 12 games make sure you’re spending the time you need to make great moves. The only reason I would play more games would be to have more moves to play. Maybe you’re caught up in the groups, forums, and other Chess related "Social media" I only have one group because I like to spend time talking to my friends and making moves. Here's an example of an opponent who is not truly focusing on the game: 


I hope you've learned something out of the three G's about going over your games and learning from them. I hope you had fun learning about setting goals and that you will set a goal for yourself in the next game, tournament, move, etc. Finally, I hope you'll watch how many games you play and use all the tips that we've learned. If you have improved or learned something new please comment below as this entire series has been a long and hard 3+ hours to create. If you have any ideas on what I should blog on next, openings, endgames, players, etc please comment as well! I hope you've had fun and I'll leave you with a wonderful quote, -KH

You are not a born CEO or investor or chess grandmaster. You will achieve greatness only through an enormous amount of hard work over many years. (In "What It Takes To Be Great" FORTUNE Oct. 30, 2006)  -  Geoffrey Colvin