Playing for a month, yet seeing no progress (beginner)


Hello everyone, 

Recently I have decided to try doing chess again. I had barely played any chess back then but had the foundations and the general knowledge of what each piece could do and the rules of the game. I have been playing for the past a month and have not seen any major improvements. I usually play games daily and solve a lot of tactics and I have watched some videos on strategies and openings. I have been stuck at around the 650-700 rating area. Every few games I play will only result in me back to where I started, making no progress. I could say that I am very impatient, but I should be expecting something at least in the first month. I am guessing that I am a bad blitz player as I accidentally make blunders due to panicking or not thinking before I play. Are there any tips you guys suggest? Perhaps I'm just a slow learner and once I hit my first goal of breaking past 1000,  I will begin to progress faster and understand much more. Although my current challenge is to pass 700. I am ok on puzzles and my peak puzzle rating did get to 1600 (although it started at 1500) on another site.


I looked at a few of your games and nothing really stands out as "fix this and you'll improve right away"

I mean, obviously the normal stuff: challenge yourself to follow the opening principles more closely and blunder check, but that takes time and is something every new player needs to work on.

I think you just need to play more. Chess takes time. Be sure to analyze your games and try to find one big mistake, and think about what you'll do differently next time. It could be something like "next time I'll make sure to look for all the ways my opponent can check me" or something more specific like "when a bishop is in the corner sometimes I forget about it, so I need to remember to look at the whole board" stuff like that.

Don't try to find every mistake. Find the biggest one, and again, plan in your head for how you might avoid doing the same type of mistake in the future.


As for the opening principles and hope chess here's some more info.

Here's one of your games


And then for blunder checking, Dan Heisman's idea of "hope chess" is very useful. The idea is you imagine your candidate move as if it's been played, and you look for all of the opponent's threats, checks, and captures to see if you still like your intended move. If you don't do this, you're "hoping" the opponent can not immediately win on the next move.

Everyone checks to see if their candidate move is safe sometimes, but your goal is to do it for 100% of your moves in 100% of your games.

It's tough, and takes time, but raising your consistency in this area will definitely improve your results.


Hi Nzmaster,

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