25 years old & learning chess - my practice blog


@ op Which you find harder to get better at, chess or guitar?

jambyvedar wrote:

@ op Which you find harder to get better at, chess or guitar?

I haven't actively tried to get better at playing guitar for years, so my memories are already a bit faded on that. I do remember that starting out with guitar for someone with zero musical experience was not the easiest task. However, there were tons of guides already out there on YouTube and a lot of free tabulatures / chords on the internet. So starting with basics and learning simple songs happened pretty fast.

I do think that getting "good" is easier with guitar than it is with chess. The main difference is that you can practice one song over and over again, until you hit all the right notes - and after that it's basically just repetition until you master it. You can play a song just like it was played on the record after enough time spent practicing. Of course, there is a huge variety with songs for all difficulty levels, and there are a lot of songs I still couldn't play after 10 years of playing guitar. But that's not really because I couldn't - but because I just haven't spent enough time practicing.

In chess your evaluation of skill is much more closely related to the level of opponents you play. It's much more difficult to objectively evaluate how good you are, and what are the mistakes you make. When playing an instrument you know it immediately if you hit the wrong note, and then you can just repeat it over and over again, until you hit the right ones. In chess such repetition only works to some extent, but since every game is different, repetition only gets you so far.

I would say that learning to play chess and learning guitar are equally difficult at the beginning, but guitar is easier to learn on the long run. You can just always pick up new songs to learn and play, and you will gradually improve. In chess you can practice a lot, yet it might take a long time, before a situation you have practiced actually happens on the board (and then you have to recognize it too). No matter how good you are at chess, you can always have a bad day, or just overlook simple things, that causes you to lose against "less skilled" players than you. Things like that don't really happen with something like guitar. Once you learn a song well enough, you could nail it with your eyes shut every time.

I believe that practically anyone can learn to master guitar with enough practice, but not everyone is capable of mastering chess. That is mostly due to the competitive nature, where your skill is always compared to your opponent. If everyone could "master" chess, then you would need to find a new name for those at the top of the ratings. Of course everyone can't be high level players in a game, where ratings are measured with your success against other players. Anyone can learn how to play almost any song perfectly with a guitar, if they just practice hard enough.

Wow, that was quite a long ramble, but hope it answers to your question. :-D


Finally a good game

I wrote not so long ago, that I have been having a bit of a bad run with chess lately. This is true, but there have been some glimpses of light at the end of the tunnel. I finally managed to play focused a complete game (30 minutes, rapid), without making stupid mistakes, and even came up with a pretty tricky move to win the game. Obviously, my opponent blundered, not finding the best continuation, but that is a natural part of chess. Only thing you can do is to create challenges for your opponent, improve your position and sometimes you get to take advantage of their mistakes. After all, if no one ever made mistakes in chess, all of the games would probably end up being draws. I'm really happy about the game as a whole, since I played only excellent or good moves, with 89 CAPS and 0.12 avg. difference. That is some really solid chess compared to most of the blunder-fests I have had recently. Regardless, here is the game fully annotated!

Hope you're all having a nice and relaxing weekend!


Start of the month - progress update

Hello all! It's the first of October, so it's time to update my rating progress table. Despite having a slightly difficult month (a lot of real life pressure) affecting my chess, I managed to continue my (slow) steady climb with the ratings. I increased all of my ratings at least a bit (which feels always nice), with most noticeable increase happening to my daily rating (going from 1634 -> 1713). I focused heavily on daily games this month, mostly because of time constraints to play actual live games, but also because last month I actually decreased my daily rating a bit. I wanted to fix that issue, and I did. I still played quite a few rapid games, but in the end I managed to end the month being only 10 points higher than at the start.

I'm really happy about the fact, that I managed to cross 1500 avg. play* rating for the first time, giving me confidence that I should be able to push all my live ratings towards 1500 in the following months.

Stay tuned for future updates. :-)

Avg. Play* = Average from Bullet, Blitz, Rapid and Daily


why do you post always here instead of create a blog section in your chess.com profile? I'd like to start my own "chess blog" to share my progress but I do not where is the right place to do that.

sebagiar wrote:

why do you post always here instead of create a blog section in your chess.com profile? I'd like to start my own "chess blog" to share my progress but I do not where is the right place to do that.

I didn't know that existed when I created this topic. And when I learned that feature exists, I had already written here for quite a while and a lot of people were already commenting here. So I figured I might as well leave it as is. This thread has existed for over half a year, so I guess the mods let it slip. :-D

But yeah, if I would start from a scratch now, I would definitely use the blogging feature on this site!