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Chess Learning is a life-long process.
Chess Learning is a life-long process.

Chess Learning is a life-long process – so buckle up!

Chess Learning is a life-long process. It demands consistency and passion. Is your capacity for learning Chess fixed or adjustable? Can you improve your Chess intelligence and skills through hard work and diligent practice, or are you stuck with the intelligence you’ve got? Many of us have dabbled in Chess and given it up citing various excuses most importantly being the demanding nature of our scholastic or graduation exams or the pressures of our office jobs. But to be involved in the learning process throughout life against all odds is the true test of a Chess player. It will determine what we are about to do with our mind after life settles down and you are comfortable to a certain level, atleast.

Psychologist Carol Dweck in her book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success says most of us have either a “fixed” or “evolving” mindset when it comes to learning.

For the sake of sixteen years of schooling, any mindset is OK, for us to to pull through, but when it comes to a lifelong learning (which Chess demands), learning for the sake of learning, without outside pressure–then – only a growth-oriented evolving and fluid mindset will be able to do it.

Lifelong learning is in fact one of the most important core competencies a person can possess. But even if we strive to earnestly possess it ourselves, it can be acquired and retained, only if we approach it in a proper way.

Firstly – we always have the innate ability and potential to change, evolve and grow through application and experience.

But some of us resign to the fact that our capabilities are fixed and that is the reason why most goals appear to be insurmountable.

Secondly, in persons with an evolving mindset, they understand that their talents and skills can be developed through good teaching and dedicated learning. They have belief in their capacity to learn and surpass their existing strengths.

Thirdly, Nature gifted us this mindset by birth but we lost it somewhere while growing up as soon as we became conscious of ourselves – in other words our ‘ego’ spoiled it up for us.

Lifelong Chess learning requires embracing all opportunities to learn.

Believe that your true potential is unknown (and unknowable) and that it’s impossible to know beforehand what your limits are.

So how do you nurture a fluid evolving mindset if it is missing in you, and how do you keep it for life, if you’ve had it already?

Below are 25 recommendations to guide you in the right direction – and kill the distractions.

1. Begin with a goal.

Each learning experience as an investment rather than a one-time transaction towards your target goal. It will be the secret of your energy in pursuit of your Chess growth.

2. Be responsible. For your own conscious learning.

The amount of Chessic knowledge you attain is directly related to the effort you put into gaining it. Mediocre effort will result in greater time periods to acquire something that would otherwise take much lesser time. The Talent Code: Greatness isn’t born. It’s grown by Daniel Coyle is one such book that will augment your case against self-defeating mindset. The author draws on cutting-edge research to reveal that, far from being some abstract mystical power fixed at birth, ability really can be created and nurtured.

3. Challenges are opportunities for growth.

Challenges are exciting because they are learning opportunities and, ultimately, a chance to increase our own competence and intelligence. Relish challenges and you are on your way to success.

4. Believe in your capacity to learn. Always.

Trust me – you are born with a capacity to learn at all times of your life. You may have had failures in School or College or even be bad at something. ‘Chessically’ speaking, you may have a poor understanding of Chess Strategy while you are good in Tactics in Chess. But if you put your entire sub-conscious mind towards the task you will be able to master and remove your weakness. That is the Power of Your Subconscious Mind. In this regard, never allow any doubts or confusion to creep in.

5. Create your own learning methods.

We all have  our personal Chess learning strategies. Some of us listen to Videos, write down notes, create mind maps, or repeat our stuff,like repertoire or thumb-rules etc., Identify the tools you use or can use to promote your own learning, and create new ones to add to your collection. Being aware of what works for you, is an important part of being an effective lifelong Chess learner.

6. Use technology. Be creative in your methods.

Technical aid in this era has never been more advanced. Use it! You will love the change and the efficiency will give you an edge over traditional learners.

7. Remember to teach. Teaching is the best way to learn properly.

If you can explain what you’ve learned to others in a way they can understand, then you really  understand it yourself. Sharing knowledge with others is an excellent way to gauge your own strengths and weaknesses and really check your understanding levels

8. Play often and analyze each game.

The logic is simple. Keep learning fun and it will remain interesting as well. Analyze your game as you will be the best person to know what exactly you thought during each move.

9. Look at the proofs.

Neurosciences and psychology have shown that our brains are ‘road-worthy’ well into old age, and it is possible to make new connections among neurons and assimilate new things even if you’re 80 years old. Recently there was a report that a 96 year old man applied for a Post-graduate course in economics, so what is your excuse?

10. Have courage to try new things.

Trying new things like a new opening repertoire or playing blitz if you haven’t played before, not only keeps our brains active and energized but also generates a evolving fluid mindset that revels in curiosity. When you broaden your view, you come to realize that there’s a lot to learn Chess than you ever imagined.

11. Benefit with the company of those who are ahead of you.

Surround yourself with people who are constantly learning, reading, sharing, discovering and enjoying. It will inspire you to do the same for yourself. And forming a group that meets once in a while creates a reservoir of chess energy that sustains and helps others whose spirits are sagging, I have personally felt that upliftment whenever I plunged in these group discussions, coming out with a sense of having recharged my internal ‘batteries’. I know that some of you may be averse to this. The fact is, learning with others is often more fulfilling than solitary learning. The best and biggest advantage, you get to see how other people interpret and react to the same information in different ways, which is priceless by itself.

12. Set personal learning agenda.

It always helps to make a plan. The best thing about self- learning is that you’re free to explore any topic of interest, at any time or pace that you want. But mastery demands a plan of action and therefore stick to one. That’s why some of us decide to master Rook endgames in six weeks or memorize all the lines in the Sicilian Najdorf. Identifying and visualizing end goals, help us become persistent and effective students of life, for life.

13. Accept defeats graciously.

This one becomes increasingly important as you will meet failures and they will prove to be your biggest adversary to overcome. We all want to win and prove better than others, and in our lifelong learning journey we must always ensure that we will not be bogged down by losses. Be sure to bounce back immediately.

14. Keep reading new stuff.

It can be a series of chess articles, a short games collection, a magazine, an autobiography of a master. Anything, as long as you’re fired up and willing to learn.

15. Make a list of stuff that you need to work on.

It can consist of entire openings or just Endgames, as long as it’s your call. There’s something powerful and magical – about writing something down – try it, and you’ll see the big difference it makes.

16. Ask questions and research them or take help.

When you ask questions it’s a sign of maturity, not ignorance. Develop your intelligence and confidence to speak up when you need to clarify something in that King’s Indian Defense and you’ll become a lifelong Chess learner–and you’ll know more than you would know if you’d been too hesitant in asking questions.

17. Meditate.

Simply studying books isn’t enough, you have to think and find ideas yourself. Spend time meditating on a real chess board and contemplating over all those ideas you have learned. Albert Einstein once said, “Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.”

18. Practice, practice, practice.

Knowing and doing are two different things. Reading a book on Chess openings isn’t the same thing as playing it. Studying swimming isn’t the same as doing real energetic backstrokes in a swimming pool. If your chess knowledge can be applied, start practicing it.

19. Filter your incoming data – avoid data overload.

Spend time on learning stuff that is really relevant and avoid going off-tangent. Lifelong Chess learners know when to pay attention and when to say no to stuff however interesting it may seem. In my case I avoid solving the compositions that are not of practical use for chess players.

20. Follow the greats.

If you really like a Chess GM for his style look up at his games and ask yourself whether you can emulate him. I know that it will be impossible to play like him (or her) but keeping someone in the ‘idol’ list will pull you upwards towards doing something big for yourself. Like crossing a milestone in chess.

21. Open up and free your mind.

Chess Learning is a life-long process and we need to be open to all the possibilities whether it pertains to openings or even changing our style of play. The Chess world changes rapidly each year, month, day and hour–can you keep up? So look out for trying anything that helps in your learning.

22. Choose a career that encourages intellectual pursuits.

Choose a career that encourages constant learning and pushes you to squeeze your free time towards that endeavor. If you are in a job that doesn’t provide free time to learn or encourage intellectual freedom, consider switching to another that does. Don’t be stuck in a job that doesn’t challenge you intellectually.

23. Have hobbies.

I am sure you can skip mindless soaps and serials in the idiot box in favor of reading a good book or collecting information about a player or even trying out a new software. Any hobby that helps you spend time in a quality way is good for our purpose.

24. Learn something new every day.

Jeremy Gleick
Jeremy Gleick

Meet Jeremy Gleick, who for two and a half years, while a sophomore majoring in bio-engineering at the University of California, has devoted an hour a day to learning something new. His rule: It can’t be related to office work, or merely reading a novel. Even if he’s sleeping at a friend’s house or elsewhere, he tries to put in his hour. “At some point in the evening, I just excuse myself and go do it.”

He recently passed his 1,000th hour of self-study, most of it done online. Now does that inspire you? Go start doing it from today, starting now.

There is so much to learn in Chess that you will find that one hour every day can still be short. Chess Learning is a life-long process so buckle up!

25. Improve your memory.

Memory bookThere are many books and programs that help you improve your memory. One such app that is designed to work on many fronts such as memory and understanding is an app called Elevate. I am finding it very addictive and at the same time challenging.

Another great resource is a book – The Memory Book: The Classic Guide to Improving Your Memory at Work, at School, and at Play by Harry Lorayne.

Lifelong Chess learning requires patience, maturity and dedication. Meeting this challenge head on will require radical phase-change in the way coaches train and players learn, as coaches take on a more guiding role play finding appropriate resources for learning and players take more personal responsibility in setting goals and reflecting on and evaluating their progress by way of online rating and OTB play.

Follow these 25 recommendations and you’ll be surprised at your capacity to learn but remember… that Chess mastery is a lifelong process

Feel free to share this article if it helped you. And comment if you want to add something to the above list. Even otherwise comments are welcome!

Kishore Kumar

Golden Chess Centre



Creative training session with Lucas Chess.

Lucas Chess Training - Breaking new ground

Lucas Chess Training – Breaking new ground. This was what I thought when I saw the new training feature of Lucas Chess. “Be the change”. Life is a journey. Every thing in life is transitory and yet important to be crossed. Each incident and every person teaches us something. Some experiences can be difficult and demanding and some can be happy and rewarding. You will learn many lessons in life if you believe in doing good and improvising everyday both morally and practically. In case you think I am going off-topic – don’t worry. I am jumping back on track (pun intended)!

The latest version of Lucas Chess involves a train journey. I have a feeling that this feature will be a trendsetter in changing the way we train in chess.

In case you did not know about Lucas Chess program it is the brain child of Lucas Monge – a very humble and good-natured person who likes to try out interesting features and who has been driving the Lucas Chess software for years. He listens to all his users and all you need to do is to comment in his blog to get in touch with him.

Lucas Chess Training - Breaking new ground

The idea is that Chess is 99% tactics and chess training is like a Train which stops at different stations (some important and some necessary for a break). Trans-Siberian Chess train is the name given to a long running train journey which involves solving thematic Chess positions and playing Chess as an excuse to pass time.

After installing Lucas Chess from here – you can access this training option as seen in the pic below.

Lucas Chess Training - Breaking new ground
How to access the Trans-Siberian Chess Train

For the train to advance, it is necessary to solve tactics. Each tactic solved correctly, leads you forward in your journey. This is an innovative idea to stretch your chess training and mind you, the tactics are interesting! They will sometimes be easy for you and sometimes will make you sit and calculate. I found that some tactics are very difficult for an amateur and that is where the fun begins – you get hooked. You will be rewarded for a correctly solved tactic and if you fail to solve any position you will not be able to progress. This way you can say that you Train has had a breakdown delay and you need to work on it.

Lucas Chess Training - Breaking new ground 

To arrive to stations one needs to solve basic endings. As in real chess games you need to master basic chess endings here too. Without a grasp of some of these your game results will stumble.

To pass the railway stations one needs to play against an internal very basic engine. A unique concept wherein your journey is made interesting with mock sparring sessions.

The overall scheme and direction of Lucas Chess Trans-Siberian Train is very creative and if I am right this is the first time we are seeing this sort of an innovation in Chess software training 

It engages the player in a fun way and motivates him to work hard. Don’t worry if the positions are too hard. You will eventually understand them and your chess games will see new insights while you move ahead in the journey. Very innovative and original approach.

It reaffirms what I already wrote – that anyone can learn chess!

Wishing you

Lucas Chess Training - Breaking new ground










A good plan helps your pieces; a better plan helps your pieces and at the same time hinders the opponent’s pieces; the best plan of all meets the needs of the position. I shall seek to explain what ‘the needs of the position’ means. We should begin by examining the different aspects of chess thinking.

1. Assessing a position

There is an old saying that life is no dress rehearsal: we only get one chance to shine. In chess, it is rather different. At various moments we have the power to choose between possible futures for our position.

2. Tactical Continuation

An obvious way of doing so is to visualize a series of moves from a given position – that is, hold a series of moves in our head, not literally see them being played in ghostly fashion on the board. In that way we can calculate two or more possible futures for our position. If we see a future that leaves us with an extra pawn, everything else being equal, we will choose one which leave us with equal material.


There is an essential place in chess for thinking of the kind ‘if I go there and he goes there, I can take the bishop….or can I? In fact, if you are a serious about improving your play, you should train by yourself everyday by solving puzzles. You might even try to develop the habit of reading through variations given in a chess book ‘blind’, i.e. without moving the pieces. It would not only sharpen your tactical vision during a game, but also make the digestion of opening theory a bit easier, and as a bonus would spare you the hassle of reconstructing positions on the chessboard!

3. Verbal Analysis

In this case we use judgment to decide the best way to improve the layout of our pieces. An internal dialogue that weighs up various strategic factors and persuades us to castle queenside rather than kingside means a different future for the position.

What is Planning?

Analysis of the features of the position and tactical continuation are not to be confused with planning. Analysis may tell you that you can put a rook on an open file, but that doesn’t mean you can make any use of it; calculation may show that in two moves time you can get your knight to a splendid-looking square in the centre – but again, it doesn’t mean it will do anything of value there.

Planning is about getting your pieces working together in a group, so that their overall strength is greater than the sum of their parts. That it what is meant by coordinating the action of your pieces.

So, as in the examples above, analysis may tell you that the rook can go to an open file, but it needs planning to hit on the idea of using the open file as a basis for an attack on the opponent’s king, which would employ all other pieces as well; or perhaps calculation shows that you can get your knight to the centre square whereupon planning says ‘Great: the knight will help support the other pieces to queen the passed pawn’.

Alternatively, planning might disagree with both ideas: ‘the rook is useless on the open file, it should be on the kingside, backing up the advance f-pawn’ or ‘the knight looks pretty on d5, But I would prefer to keep it on c2, defending the passed pawn’

Pattern Recognition and model thinking

For a beginner, any game is rich with novelty and unexpected success and failure. He or she has no internal models with which to compare the position on the board; it is like being in a dark room, fumbling about blindly and trying to make sense of the objects we touch.

We are delighted when, for the first time, out of all the mess and confusion, we manage to carry out a successful operation – it was sheer luck that all the elements fell into place to allow us to make our first combination. But we don’t forget it: we have tasted our first success, and the pattern gets placed into our unconscious mind. The next time a similar situation arises, we are waiting to unleash it. In other words, we have began to apply model thing and pattern recognition.

Of course, if instead of our own clumsy trial and error method, we can grasp the plans and ideas of the great players and make them part of our second nature, so much the better.

However, you must decide for yourself whether it is appropriate or not to apply them in a situation that arises in one of your games. You are the master of your pieces. Nevertheless, if you have seen how Kasparov or Kramnik have handled a similar position, it cannot fail to increase your chances of finding the right plan.

I will continue the next part in few days 🙂

What would you to improve your Chess Game? There are numerous opinions on this theme, but the fundamental thing you are able to do to improve is to practice continuously.

Chess has unfailingly been a forward moving brandish, even soon before the World Chess Championships in 1886. Folks consistently respected chess champions as amazing intelligent people who consistently move the event to more fantastic statures assuredly they play the event.

As of now, the present World Chess Champion is Viswanathan Anand and like most chess grandmasters, he began playing the event at a particularly early time period characterized by six and moved to win some official chess tournaments. Today, he is one of the most obviously distinguished grandmasters of chess and an epitome of the event’s eminence.

As any individual can indicate, most people who seek to come to be a grandmaster at chess don’t have the point of interest of playing chess at an early. In any case, it is that sort of imagining that just furnishes a faltering reason for not attempting one’s greatest whatsoever.

Constantly recall that with the human personality, nothing is improbable. Where there is a will there is way. To overpower rivals who have been at the amusement for quite some time and have confirmed themselves to be masters at chess, one first needs amazing certainty in himself. Truth be told, fearlessness is the group on which all items else is manufactured. Since you don’t think you could probably do it, you’re not possible to substantiate yourself wrong.

One good way to improve your game is to always use a chess clock during your games. This is a routine of developing yourself to end up being conscious of the more gigantic picture of the whole amusement itself. It will help you devise methods to guarantee your triumph. A different explanation why this technique works well is the way that most people, if not all, are fit to undergo some sort of a stupor when they are cornered. Discriminatively, this marvel is called the battle and flight reaction. By utilizing a chess timekeeper, you will be developed to make utilize of the form’s instinctive reactions and channel its profits to give you a preferred recognition of the scenario you’re in.

Official chess tournaments regularly make utilize of a chess clock to guarantee that the tournaments returns at the scheduled time. A significant number of people regularly make the misstep of sitting down for a bit plotting their early game strategies and counters and, as a lethal effect, will usually use less time to make their moves during the late game. Even though it is regular learning that the first few moves matter the most obviously, one should be aware of the more gigantic channeled of the amusement and dodge being too devoured with that regular discernment.

Recollect that chess is a dynamic game and it frequently revolves upon discriminating on the spot decisions, and seldomly upon a laid out decided plan. Chess grandmasters know this everything too well resulting from the fact that interaction has showed them so. With this in personality, it is invariably an exceptional thought to condition your brain to take a gander at the larger picture, but in addition recollect to be vigilant in your diversions and think on your feet.


[H]ow to play better chess?

The responses to that inquiry could be so differed:

-Some could suggest  those fundamental tactical themes in yours head day in and day out.

-Alternate could state begin with chess endgames…claiming that doing so will help you apprehend the pieces’ full potential and how to arrange them.

-Some chess mentors think that the key to play better chess is to expert the positional side of the event and improve your eye for ideas and long-term strategies.

-There are players, for the most part beginners, that accept that it all bubbles down to your opening decisions and chess opening collection. Pick the right openings and you might as well be en route to playing preferable chess and even authority.

-And there are some who don’t quite give a darn for what you peruse and require playing more recreations and investigating those to help you better chess playing activities.

But also we haven’t touched even the tip of the ice shelf fellas!

All are valid focuses. You lack the capacity to take that far from them. HOWEVER, the aforementioned fixes to the concern: “How to play better chess?” overlook to tackle one critical component: that chess is a thinking game.

And then assuming that you have a desire to succeed in chess, you might as well know how to think legitimately-if you are confronting a position that needs long-term planning, one that necessities driving moves to be determined, or a blend of both.

Surprisingly, the subject of having a great chess thought methodology is scarcely tackled in today’s chess books and assets.

You will spot an abundance of books on chess tactics, on essential endgames, on the best way to play the Sicilian Dragon or some hazy and tactical 1.e4 opening…BUT you will have some major difficulty time spotting a great book on the most proficient method to think in chess!

BUT don’t fear: there are a couple of guidelines that you could probably utilize to help you mechanism a great chess thought procedure. One that you would be able to drill over and over again in your teaching sessions and recreations until it ends up being robotized. But also one that permits you to fathom the position in front of you.

Thought Procedure Guideline 1

Consistently take a closer take a gander at your adversary’s moves and openings. The essential explanation why chess unprofessionals bungle off pieces, permit back rank mates, permit twofold assaults (and primarily, remain novices) is that they don’t regard the conceivable outcomes that the rival has.

Get this: you and your rival has an equivalent ‘express’ in the game. Appreciate your trumps but study to regard what your opponent have at his disposal. Be cognizant of what moves he might be antagonizing and that might as well help you take out goofs and play in front of you.

Thought Course of action Guideline 2

There are a considerable number of elements in chess-growth, drive, open indexes for your rooks, diagonals for your diocesans, stations for your knights, ways for your monarch, ruler safeguard, pawn structures, and those are simply to name a few.

There are a significant number of components in chess-advancement, initiative, open files for your rooks, diagonals for your bishops, out-posts for your knights, ways for your queen, king safety, pawn structures, and those are simply to name a few.

We are NOT yet weighing in on the MORE progressed elements in chess victory that are regular in top level play like mental causes, greatest immunity and guard, and so forth. It is unlikely to blanket every last trace of the aforementioned with your chess thought method. Since just it was, then we could every single be expert by now.

HOWEVER, to enhance chess playing dexterities, you should regard the prevailing driving forces…the essential standards in a chess recreation when you are thinking about a move or an idea.

Thought Course of action Guideline 3

Final BUT not the minimum, your chess thought methodology ought to be structured for commonsense use…for competitions and over the sheet chess recreations. This is particularly accurate now following we have snappier time controls.

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Hey friends! A new feature known as the Online Newspaper has arrived to our site!!

This paper contains articles/news/updates all over the world by the following Twitter Users:

  1. charlesgalofre
  2. OnlineChessLess
  3. Brooklyn_Castle
  5. chessdom
  6. SusanPolgar
  7. chesslearning
  8. 2700Chess


Still more can be added to our news community. If you can suggest some tweeters, it would help to develop our online news updates.

You can see the Online Newspaper in action here. http://www.coolchessgm.com/news-updates/

What is really important in aiding chess growth?

Let us classify and grade the important factors in the context of chess preparation:

  • Very important but highly neglected – Confidence Buildup
  • Very important but slightly neglected – Skills & Self-stufy (Games Analysis, Endgames et al)
  • Very important and practiced daily – Tactics
  • Not very important but engaged more than necessary – Blitz and Bullet (Online & Offline)
  • Not very important but neglected – Collection of books and Study materials (only what is necessary)
  • Not very important for a beginner – Chess Engines & emphasis on High-end Computers

This is a list of things that are more important from your personal point of view. If you are stuck wondering how to improve or why you are not improving then this checklist will tell you what you are doing wrong (and right). So that you can take corrective measures and improve the current imbroglio.



Training Positions

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76,132 Studies by Harold van der Heijden - A mind-boggling effort by the author that took him 3 years of hard work (in perfecting...