# Calculation/Blindfold play

This is intended to start a discussion  using  2 related  chess topics: Calculation and Blindfold play.

Both activities depend on the ability  to Visualize( visual memory.,) so in a sence isn''t  this the same activity? If we adapt some Blindfold methodology can we not increase our powers to Calculate.,  thus quickly increase our chess strenght!?

Before moving to these Questions lets touch on this point; ...the practice of playing multiple opponents has been banned in some countries., the former Soviet Union did so after medical research led to the discovery, that such intence concentration on one spacific thing for long periods of time is detrimental to ones health...

ok then..,  i have also read that  Blindfold play is a fantastic way to improve., in his book  "Adventures of a Chess Master" Koltanowski has this to say...Blindfold play will improve your game more rapidly than any texbook, and will do it in a more enjoyable way...

Isnt Calculation Blindfold play?..., so let us start a chat on this topic, this link between Calculation and Blindfold  Play ., is it harmfull., is it benificial., is there a connection between Calculation and Blindfold play and if so ., what are some of the methods in Blindfold play we can use to improve the ability to Calculate?

What is Blindfold play and Calculation play? I have no idea, so maybe if someone enlightens me, I can start arguing about it.

stocke wrote:

What is Blindfold play and Calculation play? I have no idea, so maybe if someone enlightens me, I can start arguing about it.

blindfold play is when you play blindfolded

@stocke. When you play blindfold you must imagine where pieces are. When you calculate, specially tactics, OTB, as you can not touch pieces you must calculate several moves ahead. Blindfold is calculating the whole game ahead.

Yes, IMO they are both related and playing blindfold is good training for caculation. They are other more simple technics. I.ex. look at a certain position in a diagram during X seconds and then try to reproduce the exact position over a board.

I've just posted my first blindfold game, It's so difficoult to play all match without looking the board, I missed a lot of winning combination, with a player weaker than me, so stressful.

You "put on a blindfold" for the privilege of playing 500 points weaker.

Kasparov said something like that, and I find it true in my experience.

If a player has difficulties preforming what I call "clean" calculation (visualizing a line once and being confident enough that they don't have to calculate the very same line again to be sure) then I think you can gain a good amount of strength by practicing blindfold or similar visualization exercises (like playing through a game score without a board as far you can).

I guess I should try that sometime.

goldendog wrote:

You "put on a blindfold" for the privilege of playing 500 points weaker.

Kasparov said something like that, and I find it true in my experience.

For me depends on the level, Kasparov couldn't play a blindfold game against someone as strong as he, but with 500 points less yes, IMO a player in a range of points from 1600 to 1800 points can play blindfold also against someone with 100 points less and win.

Efim_Bogoljubov wrote:
goldendog wrote:

You "put on a blindfold" for the privilege of playing 500 points weaker.

Kasparov said something like that, and I find it true in my experience.

For me depends on the level, Kasparov couldn't play a blindfold game against someone as strong as he, but with 500 points less yes, IMO a player in a range of points from 1600 to 1800 points can play blindfold also against someone with 100 points less and win.

It's an interesting quote.  I'd definitely be interested in testing how much it drops different player's abilities.  Other than visualization ability I think general knowledge and style would matter too.  I would guess that for most player the more you're able/comfortable in playing positional positions the less it would drop your rating.

Are you really an NM?

[COMMENT DELETED]
Platogeek wrote:

Are you really an NM?

chess.com asks for proof before you get the NM, FM, IM etc in front of your name.  I mean... they don't do a DNA test :p but it's pretty reliable.

Like any other skill, blindfold is just a matter of practice.  I learned as a young player, playing against my mentor in the car on the way to tournaments.  At first I couldn't follow the game very far - if you lost the position, you lost the game, it was resigning - at first, but gradually became able to keep it in mind, to play better at it, and finally to beat him regularly - at which point we quit playing!

I think there is some advantage to it in learning to visualize positions, but not necessarily a big edge in calculating.  It's more just being able to think about a position without having it set up before you.

Kasparov certainly wasn't giving up 500 points blindfolded, and I'm certain he NEVER said that.  Perhaps 100 points, probably less, depending on the time limit blindfolded.  The faster, the weaker in relation to sighted.

Estragon wrote

Kasparov certainly wasn't giving up 500 points blindfolded, and I'm certain he NEVER said that.  Perhaps 100 points, probably less, depending on the time limit blindfolded.  The faster, the weaker in relation to sighted.

I'm pretty certain he said it--I just have to find the quote.

Just 100 points weaker when playing blindfold? I don't think that would pass any GM's smell test.

Maybe one will pop in and give her opinion.

It's worth noting that the only blinfold games Kasparov ever played publically were in a 10 game clock simul in Hamburg 1985 (8 wins, 2 draws)

There's a lot of superstition regarding blindfold exhibitions given that many players who gave them developed mental health problems/died young etc. They were even banned (or at least discouraged) in the USSR I believe

brilliantboy wrote:

It's worth noting that the only blinfold games Kasparov ever played publically were in a 10 game clock simul in Hamburg 1985 (8 wins, 2 draws)

Kasparov made it hard on himself in that simul. Unlike a normal simul where the player moves to a board and the opponent must move, he allowed them to send their moves up to him when they were ready.

Mirroring, I suppose, a normal-sight clock simul.

There's some video of that one out there somewhere. Not exciting to view, but interesting.

Over the years I have played some blindfolded games but never tried more than one at the time. The best player I ever beat playing blind was an A class player and I was over 2200 at the time.

How many points weaker does the blind player play ? I think thats a good question and would depend a lot on several variables but I think the blind player loses at least one whole class ( 200 points ) and maybe 2 whole classes in strength. Some cant play blind at all and I suppose they lose a great deal more even .

Reb wrote:

Over the years I have played some blindfolded games but never tried more than one at the time. The best player I ever beat playing blind was an A class player and I was over 2200 at the time.

How many points weaker does the blind player play ? I think thats a good question and would depend a lot on several variables but I think the blind player loses at least one whole class ( 200 points ) and maybe 2 whole classes in strength. Some cant play blind at all and I suppose they lose a great deal more even .

I saw Natalia Pogonina somewhere here on chess.com, claiming she could play 2400 strenght blindfolded.

SimonSeirup wrote:
Reb wrote:

Over the years I have played some blindfolded games but never tried more than one at the time. The best player I ever beat playing blind was an A class player and I was over 2200 at the time.

How many points weaker does the blind player play ? I think thats a good question and would depend a lot on several variables but I think the blind player loses at least one whole class ( 200 points ) and maybe 2 whole classes in strength. Some cant play blind at all and I suppose they lose a great deal more even .

I saw Natalia Pogonina somewhere here on chess.com, claiming she could play 2400 strenght blindfolded.

What people claim they can do and what they actually can do is often two different things. I've seen too many of the elites hang queens in the blind Amber tournaments (Karpov for instance). And of course in the blind Amber tournaments they are assisted with a picture of a blank chessboard and their opponents last move.They definitely play at a much lower level when playing blind. Between 200 and 400 points would be a good ballpark figure.