Tuesday, July 1, 2008

I'm updating my Game plan

That's right! I am changing my plan. My original plan was:

1st: develop a basic system

2nd: go through "Solitaire Chess" by Bruce Bandolfini

3rd: go through "My System" and "Chess Praxis" by Nimzovich

4th: use a 32 - 16 - 8 - 4 - 2 - 1 circle system for tactic problems (6000 problems)

5th: Study Endgames

6th: do 34,000 Tactic problems (long term goal) (totaling 40,000 problems)

Well I am totally reforming this. This plan was just for getting to 1000. Now I am looking beyond 1000, because (so i've read) It isn't all that high.

My new plan is:

1: Develop a repritiore (Complete)
2: Do six circles through Chess Tactics for Beginners (~7000 problems)
3: Read "My system"
4: Read "Chess praxis"
5: Read "Silman's complete endgame course"
6: Make flashcards of test sections in above book and do 2 circles of those

This should get me around 1000

7: Do six circles of Chess Tactics for Intermediate Players
8: Get my FICS rating to 1500 and save the PGN files for all rated games
9: Analyze my games, Make flashcards of key positions, do two circles with them.

This should get me to 1500

10: Do six circles with CT-ART
11: Do two circles with Mate Studies
12: Complete Studies 2.0
13: Complete Strategy 2.0

And possibly raise me to 1800. However, all this could take a while. A Long while. However, I may finish the first part (1-6) by the end of the summer.

My personal definition of the circles has changed as well. If I try to do a 64 or 32 day circle, I will do 20 or so problems a day, then just stop, when I have the time and energy to do much more, Like today, when I did 100 problems. (I am 194 problems from completion of my first circle.) My new definition of circles is several completions, with the final completion being in one day. That's a good, flexible definition.

I also have a question. I've checked out the Convekta website. Is Studies 2.0 or Strategy 2.0 any good? They seem like ideal partners for CT-ART.

If anyone thinks that I am running headfirst into a brick wall, please tell me. until then, this is my training program.


likesforests said...

I don't think you're running into a brick wall, but a couple points...

1. Develop a repertoire - This is not too important at the 1000 level. First, most of your opponents will deviate from book within a few moves. Second, even if you gain a tiny edge from the opening that will almost never decide the game at your level.
Of course you do want to play the same first couple moves every time so you get familiar with the resulting positions, and it's a good idea, after any game, to look where you went out of book and why the book move is better.
Learning ideas behind the opening on the other hand is very useful. Eg, Improve your Opening Play Now or Ideas Behind the Chess Openings.

2. Do 6 circles through CT-B - Great idea! Hehe.

3. Read "My System". - A great book. I'll point out there are simpler books on strategy such as "The Amateur Mind" and "Weapons of Chess". This is ambitious!

4. Read "Chess Praxis" - No opinion. I have not read this.

5. Read "Silman's Complete Endgame Course".
6. Do flashcards of above book

One of the chief advantages of Silman's book is that the endings are sorted by the rating at which you need to know them.
Instead of 'reading the book', consider really studying the endgames that are appropriate to your level. I think flashcard memorization is less important than moving the pieces around and seeing how that affects the solution and outcome.
Eg, move the pawn from a central file to a knight-, bishop-, or rook-file. Push it forward one rank. Move it back one rank. Change which side is to move.

Just some ideas. Good luck with your study plan whatever you do. :)

Banatt said...

Wow! Fast reply!

I do realize that a repertoire is not essential/important at this level. I just think knowing the first few moves of an opening will help a bit. I won't study theory to move 20, but rather get a sort of 5-move springboard for agressive tactics (Like the first few moves of the scotch gambit)

On the topic of my system: I realize there are simpler books. But there's always something simpler. I could promote a pawn to a rook and be able to mate, but why not go for the biggest gun possible? My coach recommended this to me. Sure, He isn't an IM, but he did beat 11 masters in correspondence games.

I know that silman's book is organized by rating, and that I don't need to know how to play cat and mouse or Q+P vs. R+P+P, but I already knew King + Pawn endgames and "Fox in the chicken coup" endgames, which puts me past class "E". I think I could go to class B, maybe A. I don't need to go as far as expert endgames. Just things like Lucena and Phildor.

likesforests said...

The magic of technology. I receive a message whenever one of my favorite blogs gets updated.

Sounds like you've thought this through. I think you can make it through My System, just wanted to make sure you knew what you were getting into. I haven't finished it yet but so far I really like it. :)

Banatt said...

As have I, With the incredible game 1!

Blue Devil Knight said...

I agree with everything Likeforests said.

Perhaps also work on chess thought process.

Oh, and I hope playing with postmortems is in there. That's probably more important than reading Nimzovich below 1000!

Also, be flexible. If you are moving too fast through the Circles, slow it down. If your percentages rise at a steady rate, you are on track.

Chessaholic said...

Whoa, that's an ambitious program, good luck. I do agree with likesforests - forget about a "repertoire", focus on general principles and you will be fine. BDK makes an important point - postmortems and extensive analysis of your games is probably going to be more rewarding than anything else at this point. Try to find stronger players to go over your games with you, I found that has helped me tremendously.

Banatt said...

BDK: Yes, I frequently analyze and review my games, and play a few games with my brother.

Comment on flexibility noted

Chessaholic: Reviewing games has helped tremendously. I have chessmaster 9000 to analyze my games for me, but during some tournament games, my coach and I go over the game.

Banatt said...

Has anyone had any experience with studies 2.0 or strategy 2.0? anyone?

Blue Devil Knight said...

I heard they are both very advanced. I'd try Chessimo first, which has a strategy module.

Banatt said...

I was planning to use them with CT-ART way down the line (Which I've also heard is advanced)

Chess Student said...

I just wanted to add something here. I once took lessons with IM Luis Coelho of Brazil. When he would give me a position I would evaluate it for him and he would habitually be amazed and say that I could explain what was going on like a GM. Why the heck did my OTB rating always stay at the 1400 level then? Chess knowledge and ability are different things. As BDK suggests, I believe the first thing you should do is work on your thought process. Read the Novice Nook article called Real Chess. This will help give you an idea what we are talking about. I know this is an older post, but I found you blog pretty interesting. Hope you have progressed a lot since July!

Banatt said...

Thanks! I'll look into that.