danheisman's Blog


    • New Book "Is Your Move Safe?" now available

      My 12th chess book, "Is Your Move Safe?" is now available both from the publisher Mongoose Press and from Amazon (despite the fact that it says "July 1" at the top, on the right it says it can be delivered in one day ). The idea for this book is... | Read More

    • Get Better at Chess for Everyone: The Pilot

      Hi! For 14 years I wrote a column with my best improvement advice for players of all levels. It won seven awards for "Best Instruction" in North America from the Chess Journalists of America. Yes, the name "Novice Nook" was a misnomer - it was n... | Read More

    • How Did John Keir win 6-0 in his 2nd Tournament?

      I like to tell the following story to my students rated under 1600: About 20 years ago I was giving lessons to John Keir's son, Clayton. John was an active member of our scholastic club and decided to become a USCF tournament director. After one ... | Read More

    • www.danheisman.com re-designed

      Last year around this time I got a quiet email from Comcast stating that personal webpages would no longer be served from their ISP. For a quiet little email, this was quite a shock, as my website www.danheisman.com had always been served by Comc... | Read More

    • Howard Stern and the 1100-rated Opponents

      When I first started coaching Howard he was little more than a beginner; his early online long time-control rating was about 900. After 6 months he was up to 1000. Around that time, we began a lesson and Howard said, "Dan, I think I have gone ab... | Read More

    • Should Beginners Play an Opening System?

      "Besides the Colle System, are there other opening systems that you would recommend a beginner to learn?" First, let me differentiate between a regular opening and an opening system. An opening system is one where it doesn't matter what the oppon... | Read More

    • "How Do We Get Better?"

      "How do we get better?" "Uh...Follow the Golden Rule?" (The Pope is coming here to Philadelphia soon, so maybe he is a better one to ask...) After the "Q&A With Coach Heisman" show the above question was nominated by a viewer as best questi... | Read More

    • Why Don't Super-GMs Play the Morra Gambit?

      "Why don't super-GMs play the Morra Gambit?" was a question on Friday's Q&A with Coach Heisman show. In order to answer that question in more depth than I could during the show, I first would like to refer to an earlier Chess.com article "Wha... | Read More

    • What's the Secret Behind Chess?

      Yes, "What's the secret behind chess?" was one of the questions on the "Q&A with Coach Heisman" show tonight. Unlike "What's the best way to learn X?", a popular question where my answer is usually "Do/play X with strong players (at least han... | Read More

    • Who Are the Best Players not to be World Champion?

      "Who are the best players not to become World Champion?" This was a question on this week's "Q&A with Coach Heisman" TV show (first Friday each month from 5-6:30 PM ET). My first thought in answering this question was: When do we start? We p... | Read More