Have you picked up chess over quarantine? Due to COVID-19, many individuals have decided to start new hobbies. Chess has gained popularity over the past year, but many players still have difficulty. While the game of chess can be quite challenging, there are many simple ways to improve. Keep reading this blog to find out how to improve your chess skills!
Play chess more often
Just like any other skill, improving at chess requires lots of time and practice. Playing chess more often allows you to practice your strengths and assess your weaknesses. Research shows that players who improved quickly played 2x-3x more chess than players who improved less. If you want to improve your chess skills as quickly as possible, you should aim to play around 10 games of chess a day! If you are looking to improve at a steady or moderate pace, play 1 or 2 more chess games than you are playing now each day. Remember that practice makes perfect!
Analyze the game
While practicing will help you improve quickly, it won’t make a difference unless you understand your strengths and weaknesses, as well as your opponent. If you are playing online, analyzing the game can be as easy as using a “Game Report”, “Retry Mistakes'', or other analysis feature. 74% of players who improve quickly regularly analyze their play after a game. Analyzing your past moves takes only minutes, but can improve your skills greatly. Now, you will be aware of your mistakes so that you can fix them in the following games. Learning from your mistakes is key!
Take chess lessons
Taking chess lessons can greatly improve your skills. This is ideal because you are learning from an individual who is educated in the rules and techniques of chess. Studies show that fast improvers simply took one more chess lesson per week than players who did not improve quickly. It is ideal to take one lesson per day, even if it only lasts five minutes. While this time might seem short, it will add up over time and greatly impact your skills.
Study grandmaster games
One of the best ways to improve your chess skills is finding a strong player and studying their moves. This can be done just by watching the grandmaster games! Analyzing these games allows you to learn new ideas and maneuvers that are difficult to come up with yourself. When watching the grandmaster games, make sure to study games that are well-annotated. Also study each move and why it was done. This may be easier if you put yourself into the player’s shoes. It is known that active learning is one of the best and most effective ways to learn. Next time you play chess, make sure to apply the grandmaster games players’ techniques!
Follow the 20/40/40 chess rule
The 20/40/40 rule means to spend 20% of the game time on the opening, 40% of the game time on the middlegame, and 40% of the game time on the endgame. Chess players often make the mistake of spending too much or too little time on part of a game. Using this rule allows you to optimize your tactics and analyze the game properly. You shouldn’t allow your game to lag or allow yourself to neglect elements of the game!
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