Beginner: is Bullet and Blitz a waste of time?


Hello everybody,

I'm curious what peopple think about whether or not Bullet and Blitz are harmful to a beginner like myself.  

I find myself unable to stop playing Bullet chess a times because it is so addictive, and I usually end up peice pushing anyway.

From the perspective of a beginner's development.  Is it better to play online games?  Or 30 minute live games?


Do you want to be able to play good moves, or decent moves quickly?


I just realized this is horribly Misposted.  


Well, a quick view of your profile shows you do well when you have more time.  That's natural for everyone.  But the heart of your question seems to be 'you are tired of losing at blitz,etc. and want to improve at the same time.  There's no quick fix for this problem which you yourself defined as addictive.

So, here's my recommendation.  Limit yourself to one or two blitz tournaments per week on this site.  When it's over, then go back to your online games and really concentrate on them the rest of the week.  Don't play one or two "quickies" in between because then you'll find yourself back in the cycle of losing game after game.  Every chessplayer needs strong will no matter what the time control is.

Finally, you define yourself as a beginner but you've been on here for some time.  Some beginners take to blitz like 'a duck to water'.  I myself do not.  So, I admit that to myself and primarily play turn-based games. 

Perhaps it's time for you give blitz a break?


its good for pattern recognition, and practicing for when you are in time preasure.


I think bullet or very quick chess is a waste of time if you want to learn.


It is ok, however, if your goal is just to have fun.


I actually learned to handle my time trouble issues in longer time control games better, it boosts your intuition and you learn not to simply hang pieces.

But I too have to admit that it can be quite harmful for your slow play, because in the blitz mindset you see a decent move and just play it - and you are overlooking winning (or losing for that matter) combinations.

So for a beginner... I think a few online games where you are really focused on and really try to understand what is going on on the board are best. But that's me, being not the best player myself Wink


My OTB play tends to be very slow, and anything less than 45 minutes I'm likely to lose as a result. In an attempt to improve my Rapidplay, I started to play blitz on-line just a week or so ago, but my first OTB game afterwards was a disaster just for the reasons given above. (And I still ended up drawing a 30 minute Rapidplay game yesterday because I blundered a totally won position when I had less than a minute left.)

But it seems to me that for the really good players, they can think fast enough that even a lightning game looks not so different from a decent club game.


I would at a few slow games if you want to improve. Unfortunately for me, I joined a ton of tournaments when I was excited that I had a new premium membership but I had hundreds of games going on and basically was playing bullet on different games while my opponents get to play slow chess.


Wasn't too smart :/


Highly rated players love speed chess, as, for one thing, they have much better pattern recognition, and know not to play "x move" in the semi slav or "y move" in the king's indian or whatever. As for me, I probably only know 5 openings or so on sight, so I have almost no pattern recognition. I rely on tactics pretty often, and need a little time to find them. I used to say that I was totally against 5 or less minute chess, but as one of the posters above stated, it can be invaluable to have some experience with quickly making decisions, as we all run into time trouble now and then. I run into time trouble often. I don't think it will ruin your play, as long as you are playing plenty of longer time controls for the main staple of your chess diet. They are different animals, and should be so treated. 


Once you have played enough speed chess though, in a real otb .tourny you will move fast. I used to play a ton of speed chess and it has negatively affected my play.


I think that bullet games depends on how well you know openings, If you know a lot of openings then you can play quick and you will have a fair idea of what the position will be like, before you waste a lot of time


if your a beginner then do 30 minute and online chess games


It's very interesting to hear your perspectives.   Thanks to all.

I think I will avoid Blitz for a while and play some slower games, ..  Blitz is a challenge, but is mainly mindless wood pushing for me and I don't think it will help me get any better.

11qq11, tfulk, FirebrandX, BrockOxon, Tiuri, Ponz111, jetfighter13, anpu3, rick123457 and Scottrf if anyone wants to play a slow game PM me and I will send you a challenge!

Thanks again guys.


Nah.  All you have to do is add a 5 second bonus to your blitz games.  Maybe even a 10 second bonus, if need be.

Game in 10/5 should be fine for blitz.  Besides, your blitz rating is fairly close to your standard chess rating already.

But it looks like bullet is too fast for you.  Put that one aside.  You'll just go blind anyway.  And it's sloppy.  You don't need bullet play at your rating level.  Just cheap thrills.

Game in 10/5, 10/10, or 15/5 should give you all the practice you need.

But you'll need to slow down (slightly) and (also) do some studying if you want to improve.

Bullet is usually too fast for most folks over 35 years old, who aren't already fairly strong players, say USCF 1800.

Adding a time bonus will let you get to the end of the game "on the board," instead of "on the clock."  Try it.  You might enjoy the game more, and it will surely strengthen your game, especially your endgame.




I always thought blitz was great for helping me to learn openings. I could get a lot of games in, and try out different subvariations and strategies. It was also good for developing my intuition in the middlegame.

But for developing your ability to calculate deeply and accurately, especially in the endgame, where every move really counts and you have very little time left , blitz is awful. 


While I learned much more from playing Online Chess games instead of live, I believe there is a benefit to playing Blitz chess. Judging from my experience I think playing fast chess trains your brain to find more possibilities faster, which may be useful when you play in real life. 

Good luck. 

satxusa wrote:

Hello everybody,

I'm curious what peopple think about whether or not Bullet and Blitz are harmful to a beginner like myself..

From the perspective of a beginner's development.  Is it better to play online games?  Or 30 minute live games?

You seem to already know the anwser. The goal is always to play the best move possible. In order to get into that habit you need to study games for about 30 minutes. Play 30 minute games over your other choice. When you feel more comfortable with that your bullet or blitz game will also improve with it. Else you will come to a point in a fast game finding yourself just pushing pieces to push them without any clue.