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How Math Can Help You in Chess

How Math Can Help You in Chess

Jul 26, 2017, 3:35 AM 0


Everything around us can be explained by math, ranging from patterns that can be found in nature to more abstract things like music. But, there is one thing that is inextricably connected to mathematics. We are, of course, talking about chess. You will always come across a lot of opinions, as well as evidence that proves that being good at chess can make you better at math, and vice versa. And really, you will find plenty of mathematicians whose favorite hobby is chess. You will also find chess players that know their way around mathematical problems. But, while we are certain there is a connection between the two, we are still not sure how being good at math makes you a better chess player or the other way around. In order to come up with some new insights, let's consider a few things first.


The first similarity between math and chess is mirrored in the fact that both are based on logic. While math is an exact science, and chess is a game, they share a lot of elements. In fact, pretty much every single move or strategy in chess can be explained by math concepts which can range from astoundingly simple to incredibly complex. That means that, at least in theory, being good at math can help you become a more advanced chess player. But, even if you need math homework help every once in a while, that doesn't mean that you can't be good at chess. There is also a lot of people which are not that great at math, yet their chess skills are off the charts. However, since the two are so connected, perhaps the players aren't just motivated enough when it comes to math. They are good at it, even if they aren't aware of it, since they are applying mathematical rules and concepts when deciding on their next move.


According to https://homeworkhelpdesk.org/math, which is a service that provides homework help math to students all across the globe, the key to understanding and loving math is to see it working in real life. Some people don't have any problems when it comes to grasping abstract and complex concepts, but for most of us “mere mortals”, math is something difficult and distant, until we see it actually working its magic, preferably with something we are interested in. And for those who love games, chess may be just the thing that can turn them on to math.


Another reason why being good at math can help your chess skills is because every aspect of the game is built on well-defined rules, as is math, which means that everything boils down to pure logic and deduction. In fact, every single chess computer out there relies on complex mathematical calculations in order to come up with an estimate for its best move. We say estimate because calculating the optimal move every single time would require the kind of computing power which doesn't exist yet. But that doesn't mean that math can't be applied to chess by a normal human being. Some concepts such as calculations, algorithms, graphs, matrices, patterns, and combinatorics are essential when it comes to chess, and can be applied easily if you are practicing math every day. If you do homework, you are increasing your chances at being better at chess.


The thing is that math is much more expensive than chess. This means there is a lot more to math than algorithms, combinatorics, matrices, and everything else that is mentioned in the paragraph above. For example, it's fair to say that physics and math are closely related. In fact, physics relies on mathematics completely. So does chemistry to an extent. But, being good at physics and chemistry doesn't necessarily mean you will be good at math because there is so much more to math than calculations done in physics, chemistry, or chess, which are relatively simple. Nevertheless, good math skills can help you take your chess game to another level.


The problem is that we are not doing enough to bring math and chess together. As we have explained, plenty of mathematical concepts can be applied in chess. But, most of them aren't all that apparent, and math students will have a hard time picking up on them intuitively. This is why, in order to make math a tool with which we can improve one's chess skills, the connection and similarities between the two should be pointed out more often. Also, it seems that nobody has bothered to do some of the more basic stuff, such as attaching values to chess pieces. We know that queens are worth more than pawns and bishops. But we don't know the exact value of each one. Also, how can we value wins, draws, and losses? These are questions which seem pretty logical and reasonable, yet there hasn't been any serious research which could have provided some clear answers.


After considering everything that has been written in this article, math can indeed help students, as well as anyone else, become better at playing chess. And, of course, playing chess can help you become better at math, at least some parts of it. But, not enough has been done in that aspect, because it's very hard to draw parallels between the two the way things are now. It is up to the mathematicians, scientists, and educators to bring those two worlds closer together so that everyone can enjoy the benefits.

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