86

There is never too late to learn anything (chess, phd, new job, skateboarding). Also you have really small chances of being new superGM :-). Analyse, not just play. Each game you lost you should review and try to understand why exactly have you lost. Your analysis should depend on your chess level. Learn standard openings (first starting moves and be sure ...


42

You can still improve, 25 years is not old. At 40, I'm rated about 300 points higher than at 25, and I hope to improve further (although that isn't realistic as I'm not spending any time on the game...). This article in Dutch is about a (strong, 2200 or so) player who started playing again at 60 and scored an IM norm with a huge overscore a few years later, ...


38

Very simple. Join a chess club and play people face-to-face. You'll improve rapidly after that.


26

The first thing to learn once you know how the pieces move is basic tactics and general strategy. Tactics: In certain positions it is possible to gain an advantage doing a certain move or sequence of moves. This is referred to as tactical motif/pattern and for a list of all kinds of motifs take a look here. You don't need to start learning all of them at ...


24

It's partially who the opponent is, and partially how much better the opponent is. I've gone from ~1750 to almost 1900 in the last year (approximate as ECF grades - 142-158 to those who understand ECF). In that time I've played a lot of players who are appreciably better than me. But not massively better; most have been 1850-2100. That meant I could still ...


19

I recognize that attitude. Remember, first, that chess is HARD. That's why it took so long to get computers to be able to play it well. The rules are simple enough but understanding how those rules fit together to build strategy when the opponent is also building their own strategy, is very difficult. It's not even quite like backgammon, where I like to tell ...


18

It's never too late for you to start or improve in chess. I used to play in several FIDE and USCF chess tournaments. I played against a wide age range, from 5 year olds to 70+ year olds. There are many chess players of all age ranges and skill levels. I played chess for about 10 years before I actually joined a chess club. At first, I was not able to beat ...


17

Here are my Chess apps for Android: iChess — lots of chess tactics to solve, all offline. You can also load your own PGN or purchase recent tactics based on openings, or from recent games. Chess Book Study — a very innovative app that shows a board and an eBook in the same screen. It makes it easy to study chess books. You can even dictate and the moves ...


17

You say: "Do the same puzzles over and over? I'm worried that once I've memorised a puzzle, then I'm not doing so much calculation as memory retrieval." Memory retrieval is exactly what you should be doing! The brain improves recall not by repeated input, but by repeated output. This is why reviewing notes is a terrible way to study for a test, and why ...


17

I'm a FIDE master and in my experience I've never come across any material on how to physically move pieces faster. There's not a lot you have to do: pick up the piece, move your arm to where you want to move the piece, and let go. As you play more this becomes second nature, to the point where training wouldn't make much sense. As for short moves costing ...


15

I am on the road that starts from the "Beginner" stage, trying to leave this "town". I know and understand the rules, I also understand most of the "classic" tactics. I am able to reproduce some mating patterns (and to understand them I think). Based on your information I think I can safely assume that you would see those blunders if someone pointed them ...


14

Solving alot of tactic puzzles is a fantastic way to improve for a beginner. One of the reasons for my improvement was the constant solving of tactics on chess.com's tactics trainer feature, which basically made me shed my beginner skins, since tactics almost always play a decisive role in the games of beginners. However, you must also play many normal ...


14

It is a common problem to calculate all the variations and then suddenly realize that the first move was simply terrible. Actually, there is a rule that should be applied after finishing a complicated calculation, the Blumenfeld rule! The Blumenfeld rule is formulated roughly as follows. After finishing a complicated calculation, take a fresh look at the ...


14

For now, I am going to assume that you are a somewhat weaker player. If that is the case, virtually 90% of your time should be spent on tactics for now, but you want to find them grouped by category, so you are constantly solving similar problems. Try to do 50 per day, spending no more than two minutes per problem. In addition to that, you want to find a ...


14

And an interesting question you pose as to how good you could become playing 3|2. The 3 min plus 2 second increment you play means roughly say a move rate overall of about say 6 seconds per move for an average game of 50 moves. You try to always play slightly stronger players, excellent idea, so assuming you are not getting trounced ie at least breaking even ...


13

I don't know which person you are referring to, or if the exact word "coach" was used, but GMs like Carlsen don't really have coaches in the sense you are probably thinking of; they have seconds, who have the following functions: Opening research. This might mean performing general research, or looking for particular weapons that are likely to be useful ...


13

I have played chess in my school days and didn't play afterwards for a long time. Then I started playing games on chess.com and the experience isn't the same as playing with a real person. Like you have said when playing on chess.com, since I'm shown a rating, I tend to play the game with the intention of improving the rating. And to do that as quickly as ...


13

First of all, there is no method that will just make you half an Elo point stronger each and every day. Chess improvement usually happens in leaps and bounds with long phases of seeming stagnation in between. The reason you feel overwhelmed is that you focus on the result instead of the process. And you realise that between the desired result and your ...


13

Improving positional understanding is a longterm project. You do it by playing, by analysing, by going through well annotated master games and by working through books on the subject. But contrary to tactical exercises these things often don't have an immediate effect. Personally I also misapplied a lot of positional concepts that I had read about. ...


12

Coaches at that level are analysers rather than teachers. They prepare openings for a specific opponent, investigate opponent's weakness, help to analyse games during tournament after each round to find mistakes, perform official things such as registering, following results, mental encouragement ... High chess rating and practical abilities don't mean ...


12

AlwaysLearningNewStuff's answer is very good but I'd like to approach the problem by giving a simple piece of advice I read from GM John Nunn's "Secrets of Practical Chess": Once, I played 100 games against Mike Cook at 10 minutes (for him) vs. 5 minutes (for me). At that time, Mike was about 2300 strength. About halfway through the series (which ...


11

There are already great answers to your question - I just want to add a few notes. If you were to begin playing the guitar at age 25, would you expect to play like Eric Clapton within 6 months? 1 year? 10 years? Maybe not impossible, but highly unlikely, and nobody who takes up the guitar should expect this to be achievable. Eric Clapton has probably been ...


11

Great questions. 1) Is it too old for me to start chess. Because I have been playing for almost 1 year but i didn't find much difference in my chess rating. how many days will it take to me to become good player like 1800+? 25 is not too old at all. Advancement in chess just takes a while. You have to learn the game and learn to think in the game's ...


11

I don't think any coach would say that you should only play opponents rated 600+ higher than you. Here's for example what Dan Heisman says, which I think makes a lot of sense: Play mostly opponents 100-200 points higher than you - you need to be punished for your mistakes so you won't make them again... ...but don't completely stop playing opponents 100-200 ...


11

The Soviet Union used to dominate chess because it had state-sponsored schools that provided high-quality trainers. After the Soviet Union broke up, funding dried up, and many of these trainers emigrated. Naturally the competitors caught up. Vladimir Kramnik discusses some of this in an interview he gave with chess.com. Chess.com: Much has been written ...


11

There are a variety of reasons: Regardless of when they were played, there is always a lot to learn in analyzing better players's games. Players from a century ago often used simpler strategical themes that are easier to understand and apply. Opening theory was not that well developed back then, so the "actual game" starts earlier on. You also wouldn't find ...


11

I don't know the answer to your question on over the board games but in online games, it is good to have a mouse with a fast response time for blitz and bullet. In online chess, the dragging and clicking of the pieces just comes with practice. I don't think that players actually specifically practice moving pieces over the board, but just play a lot of over ...


10

This question will receive more opinionated answers regarding the time control, I will answer in perspective of an advanced beginner Chess player. Since you have said you are a beginner and never played in a tournament before, I would suggest you to have 1 hour or 45mins + 45sec increment time control. This is because of my previous answer here: Do longer ...


9

Is [solving chess puzzles] a good way to learn chess or should I play more normal games? This gets the classic answer for an either/or choice that needn't be exclusive: yes. In other words, do both, as these are two of the surest ways to improve, and each is all but necessary in order to do so. Of course, one's time is limited, and so your question may ...


9

A suggestion I have is to start playing gambits, and high-risk-high-reward openings. For example, playing the King's Gambit as White forces you to utilize any initiative you are given. Playing the KID as Black will force you to sacrifice pieces now and then to win istead of losing. Basically what you need to do is to start appreciating initiative by ...


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