Useful story of an RCA Student

First, I’d like to remind you of the new course “Think, Plan and Win” which contains my seminars that were held in India during October and November. You can find more details about the course and purchase it here.Think, Plan and Win

Also, I’d like to remind you of the holiday special offers. You can find all details about the special offers here.
designSpeaking of my seminars in India, I met a lot of great people there. One of them is Ram S Krishnan – an avid chess player and follower of RCA.Igor and Ram
Me and Ram

His story is very instructive and typical: LOTS of chess players experience similar ups and downs. That’s why I’d like to share this story with you. Smart people learn from the experience of others, right? :)

Ram has been an aspiring chess player for years, and even achieved some great results – he got one GM norm. Despite of his active study, at some point his rating started decreasing. No matter how hard he tried, it didn’t change the situation. The government officials may simply blame ‘crisis’ in such cases, but we have to find a more practical solution… :)

When Ram showed me his games, everything became clear to me right away. Let me share an example with you.

Gasanov – Ram S Krishnan
  1.c4 Nf6 2.g3 c6 3.Bg2 d5 4.Nf3 e6 5.00 dxc4 6.a4 a5chess
White to play

What do you think about these moves? Did you notice anything special or is it just a standard opening play? Please, think about it yourself first, and only then continue reading.

What do we need to do in an opening? Develop your pieces. Then why Black moved pawns five times within the first six moves? It violates the fundamental rules of development. Anyway, let’s continue the game.

7.Qc2 Bd6 8.Na3 00 9.Nxc4 Bc7chess
White to play

Is there anything noticeable in these moves? As usual, I encourage you to think yourself first.

Another well-known rule suggests to avoid moving the same piece twice in an opening. However, this is exactly what Black just did. It’s not surprising that Black lost this game afterwards…

Now we are coming to the main question: why is Black player making such obvious mistakes? Let me mention once again that he’s a very experienced player, who obtained 1 GM norm, and a lot of scalps of IMs and GMs.

By the way, the same question is applicable to 90% of modern players, and most likely it relates to you just as well.thinkNowadays there’s an overabundance of available chess tutorials. On the top of that you have a computer that contains lots of games played by strong players. Also, your chess engine can demonstrate you a lot of variations during an analysis.

Each of those factors, drugs your attention into a certain direction. Ultimately, it’s so easy to deviate from the right path.

This is what happened with Ram. I see a similar situation for 90% of new students I work with. Most likely, it happens to you just as well. Be warned. Do NOT let computer analysis and opening variations deflect you from fundamental rules.

This was a DON’T, while you may be wondering about DOs as well.dos and don'tsHere they are:

1. Know the fundamental chess rules. I explained them in many of my courses and seminars.
2. Whenever you digest any new information, examine it for compliance. For instance:
  • If you study a new opening line, ask yourself: “Does it follow the fundamental chess rules?” If not – reject it.
  • Check your own games, especially the ones you lost. Ask yourself “Where did I violate fundamental chess rules?” You have certainly violated them at some point, otherwise you would not lose, right?
  • If you stumbled upon a certain recommendation in a video lesson published in the Internet – “examine it for compliance”. Do NOT trust it blindly, even if the lesson is prepared by a titled player.

Following these recommendations will help you stay on the right track. This will guarantee you smooth and stable advancement.

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