Questions tagged [psychology]

Questions related to cognitive, motivational and other psychological aspects of chess, both during and before/after games.

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7
votes
6answers
6k views

Is playing slow necessarily bad?

I play online chess on under 5+0 and 10+0(predominantly) time controls. I end up in time problems way too often (especially in 5 minutes TC). I contemplated a lot on certain positions, and somehow ...
2
votes
1answer
209 views

How does competitive chess affect players' mental health?

I suppose that participation in international open tournaments has a positive mental effect on most amateur players. As for the professionals involved, if they have other sources of income and also ...
-2
votes
1answer
102 views

Chess training to get to 2000 rating [closed]

I have been playing chess (sometimes a lot, sometimes none) for a very long time. I want to become an international master in 4 years, or have a rating of 2000. I am 15 right now and have a rating of ...
3
votes
1answer
98 views

Equalizing ratings across rapid, blitz and bullet?

I've been noticing that whenever I play rapid games at my current 2050 Lichess Elo my opponents are also between 1900-2100 blitz and sometimes their bullet rating is also sufficiently equal to their ...
3
votes
2answers
653 views

Being an Anti-Sicilian vs. Sicilian player

So I have been developing my opening repertoire on ChessBase recently and established that, as a 1.e4 player, I have to properly memorize Open Sicilian main line, Dragon, Hyper Dragon, Taimanov, ...
28
votes
4answers
6k views

As a beginner, how do I learn to win in “won” positions?

I'm fairly new to chess (~3 months) and I have almost entirely been playing on chess.com where my rating sits somewhere between 1000 and 1100. Recently, I decided to sign up for lichess.org, where I ...
15
votes
5answers
3k views

How can I improve after 10+ years of chess?

I've played chess for almost 13 years now (I'm 23), and I don't know how to improve my game level. I'm rated ~1400 FIDE, and have never been higher. I'm also ~1300 on chess.com after 700 games, and ...
5
votes
1answer
126 views

What do we know about how to get better at chess? [closed]

When players here ask about getting better, there are frequent suggestions like "solve more puzzles", "study endgames", "read books", etc. But what do we know from a ...
16
votes
3answers
4k views

Balancing chess and work

I started chess 2 years ago at 500 ELO and have climbed up to 1900 ELO (chess.co) recently. I have fallen deeply in love with the game and have made it a life goal to achieve eventually a mastery ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Famous grandmaster games of “torturous” winning or flaunting out of arrogance?

I was originally wondering why we don't see more torturous type of games among masters. For example, instead of proceeding to checkmate, the player in control methodically takes all pieces of his ...
2
votes
4answers
237 views

Does the design of chess pieces affect professional chess players at all?

There are some unique designs of chess pieces such as the following: (For the one above, I am not even sure if the setting up of pieces is correct.) I will not feel comfortable playing with any of ...
19
votes
5answers
4k views

Brain fog when playing chess

I've been playing chess from many years but started playing more from past few month. I only play 3 minute blitz games, have rating around 1350 in chess.com and 1700 in lichess, have played few ...
6
votes
3answers
287 views

What sets chess players apart?

I want to improve at chess, like everyone does. I am trying to structure my study to get the most out of if. But this plan needed a fundamental question to be answered, what sets masters apart from ...
4
votes
4answers
244 views

How can I deal with frustration in not being able to solve puzzles in time?

I've been doing 1700-2000 puzzles for some days now. My problem is that when I cannot find a solution within 10 minutes, it literally kills me inside. I just get so frustrated and angry. Theh I just ...
6
votes
3answers
521 views

Relation between checkers and chess

After watching GM Vasyl Ivanchuk's victory against GM Baadur Jobava in checkers, I have a question in my mind: Is it possible to relate checkers with the tactical knowledge of chess? If so, how?
3
votes
5answers
424 views

How to master 1.e4 repertoire from scratch

I was a hardcore 1.c4 player. But, for quite some time, the popularity of Nakhmanson Gambit, Jerome Gambit etc. has encouraged me to experiment with 1.e4. I have read 1.e4 with backup plan before. Now ...
10
votes
6answers
8k views

Why do high level players memorize specific games?

Inspite of having such a large number of possible positions and games why do high level players bother about some specific game from some million years ago ? It may be helpful in understanding ...
8
votes
4answers
364 views

Can playing too much chess make you see everything as chess moves?

According to this answer, some schizophrenics who compulsively play chess a whole lot see everything as chess moves. I looked for an alternate source of that information through a Google search and ...
3
votes
1answer
116 views

Blundering phase

I have played more online Blitz recently and it was quite some fun, until I encountered what I would call the "blundering phase". Every once in a while, my chess ability takes quite a hit when I ...
9
votes
9answers
7k views

Is chess a zero sum game?

"Chess is a zero sum game" is a claim you see often, even on this forum. Game theorists will tell you that it is just obvious. Either the game is a draw, nobody wins or loses, or one side wins and ...
20
votes
10answers
9k views

How to minimise your opponent's fun in a game?

I play numerous online chess games and in this question I am self-centred: I play for two purposes: to win the game, or when winning is unlikely, to draw the game. to improve my chess skills, which ...
5
votes
1answer
528 views

Getting better at OTB chess

I live in a small town where there had been a total of 2 tournaments during last 5 years and 0 chess clubs, hence I have almost nil experience playing OTB chess. But sometimes I set up a board and ...
8
votes
1answer
557 views

Is chess a good game to fight against gambling addiction?

I read a couple of poker books and I thought I could win, which was not the case. Fortunately for me I have a decent chess level, 1930 in rapid, and I simply changed poker books for chess books and ...
5
votes
2answers
166 views

How to exploit an opponent must-win situation

I am 1.5 points clear of the field, and my last-round opponent is in a must-win situation for a prize. Is there a mathematically/statistically proven way for me to take advantage of this state of ...
1
vote
2answers
113 views

Are there studies showing that descriptive notation is easier to use for blindfold than algebraic notation?

What studies have compared effectiveness for thinking by chess players using descriptive vs algebraic notation?
8
votes
4answers
7k views

How do GMs “play the man, not the board”?

How do GMs "play the man, not the board" as some books say? Would that work for club level players or could they use other methods? Prepared variations? Trash talk? What are the ways one can ...
4
votes
2answers
160 views

How do you deal with you losing your concentration

How do you do deal, with losing your concentration during a chess match? Then making a bad blunder? I constantly lose concentration.
9
votes
1answer
3k views

Best chess player with Down Syndrome

Who is the best chess player with Down Syndrome? Wiki says that the mental ability of a person with Down Syndrome equals to this of a healthy person 8 or 9 years old. So, are there some players with ...
7
votes
2answers
393 views

Can a player be forced to neatly center their pieces on the board?

Following up on a question regarding piece adjustment after an accident, I was wondering if there is a rule which forces someone to neatly place their pieces on the board? I am asking in the context ...
17
votes
4answers
8k views

Carlsen beat a high ranking GM with 1 Nh3. Conclusions?

In 2018, Magnus Carlsen played a rapid game on chess.com agaisnt Grandmaster Aleksey Dreev in which his opening move was 1. Nh3. [Title "Magnus Carlsen-Alexey Dreev, Pro Chess League, chess.com INT, ...
3
votes
5answers
251 views

Help with mistakes

I (around 1700 on classical games on lichess) need advice on how to correct some mistakes I often make during the games, if possible, from a player with a Master title or higher. I have noticed that ...
7
votes
1answer
230 views

Do you feel intimidated by higher rated players? [closed]

I beat this 1570 rated player (me being 1170), but the thing is that i had his rating covered by a youtube pop-up window so I didn't know he's higher rated until i finished the game. I feel like if I ...
3
votes
5answers
222 views

A question on psychology / strategy in Chess opening

Is it a good idea to play unusual openings (minus the d&e files), such as c4 played by Bobby Fischer in his “Game of the Century”, to confuse the opponent and stop them from playing their natural ...
29
votes
7answers
11k views

Why aren't there any women super Grandmasters (GMs)?

In chess you don't need to be physically strong. Well, you need some kind of endurance, but is it the real reason why there aren't any super strong women GMs? Yes, I know about Hou Yifan and Judit ...
5
votes
2answers
545 views

Ways to notice opponent's threats during one's own move

I am currently playing in a tournament and my last game was a total disaster. Without going into details, I missed a two-move threat my opponent had in the position (I'd expect a ~1600 Elo rated ...
8
votes
4answers
409 views

At what point does this mental trick stop working?

Sometimes, I'll be in a position where my opponent is threathening to do something and I cannot stop it. So, in response, I play a move that looks pretty dangerous and clever, but which I in fact have ...
42
votes
17answers
10k views

How do you keep chess fun when your opponent constantly beats you?

How do you keep chess fun when the only person that wants to play against you beats you all the time? I am struggling to want to keep playing, because I get smashed all the time, and it is not fun ...
19
votes
4answers
2k views

Why do professional chess players point at the pieces with a middle finger?

I've recently heard and then actually started to notice more and more that professional chess players tend to use a middle finger when pointing at pieces on the board like in this Anand vs Caruana ...
2
votes
2answers
165 views

Concentration during games

I've noticed that I lose sight of pieces' positions very fast during games, also, for some reason, I fail at having an "objective" view, some kind of an eagle eye, i.e I find myself concentrated on ...
1
vote
2answers
509 views

Blunder checklist for strong playrs

I find myself having to use checklists of really simple stuff (like going over all captures, checks, threats, tactical themes, changes after a move) quickly in order to avoid very basic oversights ...
54
votes
14answers
20k views

How should I make a 6 year old think more?

I have been teaching my 6 year old daughter chess for past 2 years. She plays reasonably well. She often defeats level 25 in Chess Lv 100 app and sometimes Level 6 in Chess.com app. So I am guessing ...
2
votes
1answer
290 views

What age is too old for becoming a good international tournament player? [duplicate]

I am around my 30s and my ELO is 1350. I have attended many national tournaments, but I have very few international tournament experiences, one of which did not go very well. I love my job, but I ...
10
votes
5answers
707 views

How can a >2000 player stop making basic errors?

For the last 3 months or so I've been unable to concentrate and play chess to the level that I am used to. I'm rated 2050. I've been suffering from the following symptoms: Being completely unable to ...
3
votes
2answers
216 views

How can I “see the board”?

I often get into stupid blunders, get myself into pins and threats that I don't see on time etc. How can I avoid that ?
4
votes
2answers
491 views

How or what to practice when mentally exhausted?

You had a long day and your batteries are drained. You would like to improve your chess though. How to do this in an appropriate or maybe even restorative way? Should you practice at all or do ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Facing its own weapons

It's not a technically oriented question but rather a "psychological" one. Personally, I don't especially like to play against my own lines especially sidelines. If I decided to play a precise line ...
7
votes
3answers
391 views

Effect of chess on work

I'm a software engineer, mostly working from home so I get to schedule my time however I want. I noticed few things recently. If I play more than 3 games a day, I can't work afterwords, I'd be ...
5
votes
3answers
317 views

What are some good books or articles on how to play coffeehouse chess?

A coffeehouse style is what players who work hard to improve their skill at finding the objectively strongest moves in a position, having taken account of the objectively strongest moves available to ...
-2
votes
3answers
246 views

What if we downloaded a gigantic database of chess games into our brains (intelligence downloads)?

If we downloaded a gigantic database of chess games into our brains (intelligence downloads), then would we play at a stronger level than the world's leading top players? What about if we downloaded ...
0
votes
1answer
349 views

Why do many players resign from chess in a relative young age? And become coaches or writers instead?

Have they reached their peak rating and find it unmotivating to pursue any further? Are they lacking financial security? Are they tired of travelling?