Chess Training Techniques & Tips
The daily chess training is something every ambitious player should take seriously. No matter what your rating is, if your goal is to become a better player within a short period of time you must train regularly and actively. This is, of course, an obvious observation, the question is how? What exactly should you be doing in order to achieve your goal?
These questions don’t have a definite answer as every teacher has his own book. However, in my experience as a coach and player, I have gotten certain knowledge and training techniques that I encourage my students to do, so far with optimum results.
In my opinion, there are three principal factors to produce an all-around training:
KNOWLEDGE is all that you can absorb from the game without having to interact in excess, like for example learning theory, studying classical games, studying commented games by a strong player. This process, as passive as it looks, turns out to be useful; the more you see the more you know and the more you can imitate. It sounds funny, but we are all imitators, at least in certain phases of the game. We play typical moves in positions which we have seen a similar structure. You get the idea.
SOLVING is when you train actively. You learn by doing something; taking a collection of exercises and start solving them is the first start, but it is not all there is to it. You could also include analyzing your games, but of course, you have to do this correctly only by yourself. The use of the engine comes later in order to see how accurate your analysis was.
EXPERIENCE means practice. I’ve had students perform brilliantly during training sessions but poorly at tournaments. Actually, the performance gets better as the tournament advances and in several cases after playing 2 tournaments in a short period of time they enter the third in great shape. This is because chess is a very complex game; when competing there are factors we don’t necessarily train at all. The nervous system plays a huge role in our decision making, the time management, the fear of a loss. The tournament is that place where you get tested and inevitably there will be tough moments.
Now that we have explained what we need to cover in our chess routine it is time to draw a plan on how to start doing it. We have 5 training techniques that will absolutely improve you a lot if you do it on a regular basis.
Since I suspect not all of our readers are not fully dedicated to chess and have a limited amount of time, I have great news for you, as little as 90 min a day will do. Cut it to 1 hour if you must, but keep the regularity – this is crucial. If there are days when you have more time available, you can do more.
Next, you will see what you have to do; we recommend you do every day a different action in order to avoid boredom and lack of motivation. One day you learn theory, next day you do tactics, next day you see games. This way you’ll want to see every day what the next training session has for you.
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