The necessary factor of your chess progress

In this issue I would like to discuss an important aspect of chess, which can determine one’s success or failure in a game. I believe strongly that this will have a great impact on your chess development.
I am referring to OBJECTIVITY. Maybe you think to yourself, “Come on, what is so great about playing objectivity?”
Let me explain. Chess players often wonder “why can’t I make any progress?” Let’s think about this question. It has great practical value.

How to beat a STRONGER opponent?

In the previous lesson, we analyzed the correct attitude and mental approach when facing WEAKER opponents. Now let’s talk about the flip side of the coin: the right mental approach when facing a STRONGER opponent.
Just like in the previous scenario, there are some typical mistakes (which most players make), and I have some important practical recommendations and antidotes for these mistakes. Without further ado, let’s go!

Top Grandmasters VS Our Students

Most chess learners enjoy watching/reading the games’ analyses made by top Grandmasters. This is exciting indeed!
At the same time, however, these comments are often not very clear to the viewer/reader.


Recently I have received a lot of questions about blitz games. Here I will answer them all.
–> Is it useful or harmful to play blitz?
When you play a blitz game, you have no time to think. Therefore you use the things you ALREADY know. Thus you do NOT learn any new skills.

Lasker’s advice

Recently I looked over my chess books and found an interesting article of Emanuel Lasker. It calls “Final Reflections on Education in Chess”. I’ve decided to share it with you, because it contains some useful ideas about chess training.
The article was written almost a century ago, but it’s still 100% actual.

The most powerful ideas in chess (part-2)

In the previous issue we’ve been talking about “the most powerful ideas in chess”.
I’ve told you why many players don’t have chess progress despite their persistent trainings. It happens because they try to learn many abstruse ideas and can’t apply them practically afterwards. That’s why a reading of numerous books often doesn’t help.
Last time I’ve asked you to perform one task (to play against a computer and to use the defensive ideas I gave you). Those who tried to perform this task found that it is almost impossible to do it practically.

What is Your Plan (PART-2)

In the previous lesson we were talking about a PLAN for your chess progress. Random advancement leads nowhere. A clear plan, on the other hand, can bring you to your goal quickly and efficiently.
So, how to plan your chess progress? Being chess players, planning should be something very familiar to us.
How do you begin thinking about your plan while playing a chess game? You begin by evaluating the current position first.
You can’t think instantly about future plans because your plans need to based on something concrete.

The most powerful ideas in chess

I am glad to present you the new lesson. This issue’s topic is: “The most powerful ideas in chess”. Here we will talk about “what are the most powerful ideas in chess?” and “what works best in chess?”.
However, first I’d like to discuss another question. What does a man do in a critical situation?He/she makes the SIMPLEST and the most AUTOMATIZED action. If someone has no automatized actions for such situations – he usually freezes with fear and does nothing at all (or becomes panic).
Why do I ask you about critical situations?

The Value Of Chess (Part-2)

Before reading this lesson you may like to review or read the first part. Here it is: LINK
In the first part of this lesson we were talking about a positive influence of chess on you:
 Chess trains your mental skills.
 Chess gives you deep understanding of strategical principles.
If that sounds logical, then why is it that MOST chess players can’t seem to apply their trained mental skills in reality? Read on!

The Value Of Chess

First off, a word of warning: this lesson is NOT for everybody! Instead of giving you answers, I’ll keep asking you questions. This isn’t some passive reading stuff. You’ll need to keep THINKING all the time…Sounds frightening? :)

What is Your Plan?

Can you imagine a sea captain who tries to reach a distant land without a map? Can you imagine a motorist driving with closed eyes? Of course not.
If you want to achieve a certain distant goal, you need to have a map that will show you the right way. This relates to your chess goals as well.
Most players study chess rather haphazardly. They watch the videos that look nice, and read books that are popular or seem good to them.
I have to confess that I used the same way till… International Master level! This was my terrible mistake. Luckily, after that I met a good coach. Then I realized that I’m going, but I’m going nowhere…
Chess teaches us strategic thinking. You’ve probably heard that you must have a PLAN while playing. And it’s better to have a bad plan than not to have any plan at all.
It would be wise to use this rule while playing chess and in other situations as well.
So here’s my question to you:
What is your PLAN for chess progress in 2013?
I’ll give you some hints in the next issue, but I’d like that you think about it by yourself first.
A plan should contain:
+ your overall goal;
+ steps/stages of moving towards that goal;
+ schedule of training.
If you have a PLAN it doesn’t guarantee your success, but gives you a chance for it.
If you don’t have a PLAN you have almost an absolute guarantee of failure.
Give it a try. And remember: it’s better to have a bad plan than not to have any plan at all.
What is your PLAN for chess progress in 2013?
To conclude, I’d like to give you 2 cool puzzles. As usual, your task is to find the best move and calculate the resulting variations.
Topalov – Dominguez
White to Move
White’s turn
Central squares are usually very good for a knight. This time, however, White’s centralized knight is suddenly trapped! Can you see any way to escape?
Anand – Nakamura
White to Move
White’s turn
Black puts pressure over the c-file and is trying to develop a king-side attack. What should White do?
After you come up with your solutions in both games, download the commented games here:LINK