As a coach, a recurrent question from parents and players is how I can improve my chess? I suggest to do the following
- Think about a chess goal you want to achieve. For example, I want to break 1000 USCF, win my section at the local Grand Prix.
- How much time a week are you willing to set aside to work on your chess goal.
- Find a local place to play equal or stronger opposition on a regular basis. Slow time controls are recommended. Record your games on paper.
- Ask a chess coach or high rated player to review the games with you (especially the games you lose) and come up with an improvement plan that fits your schedule.
- Play slow games( 20 to 30) applying the suggestions from the high rated player or chess coach.
- Evaluate if your chess is progressing or not. Adjust you chess training accordingly.
- After you reach your initial goal is time to set a new one.
Article 2 : How to Train to Play a New Chess Opening Successfully
The key question when a player wants to play a new opening is how much theory he/she needs to know before trying the opening over the board. As a coach I recommend to my trainees to go over two or three model games with me. Next, the player must play ten to fifteen practice games online and/or over the board to develop a better sense for the middlegame positions resulting from his new opening. As a rule some of the practice games will be short loses after the player falls into and opening trap. Opening traps aim to obtain a positional concession, extra material or check mate. A player should learn the matting traps first and then the others because as Nigel Short pointed out “Check mate ends the game”. In other words, you may comeback after falling into a positional trap, but a comeback from a matting trap is very unlikely.
How to prevent losing games with your new opening?
I recommend to use chess software to learn the matting combinations in your new chess opening first. Next, you should deal with the winning material combinations. Good materials to accomplish this opening training are Mating Combinations in the Opening and Tactics in the Chess Openings, both are available at Convetka http://chessok.com/