Learning Chess

Interested in learning chess? This suite of articles will help you understand the game, improve your skills and ultimately master it.

Igor Khmelnitsky and US Chess Board Member Kevin Pryor (August 2021)

You versus Bobby Fischer

International Master Igor Khmelnitsky participated in three U.S. Chess Championships. An actuary by profession, Khmelnitsky is also a chess player, coach, and author. In this article, I highlight one of his books, Chess Exam – Matches against Chess Legends: You vs. Bobby Fischer. More 🡢

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave; Photo courtesy of the Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

Queen Sacrifices by Top-Level Chess Players

Sacrificing a queen is rare in chess games. Since the queen is the most valuable piece, giving her up for lesser chessmen or for an attack is difficult to contemplate. Within the last two months, two top-level chess players have sacrificed their queens. More 🡢

Root vs Li

Turning Chess Wins into Draws

On behalf of the Alliance Chess Club, Louis A. Reed Jr. organized and directed the Fourth Annual Queen City of the Prairie Open & Fort Worth Championship on July 17–18, 2021. Although I scored just 3 points out of 5 rounds, I split the first expert prize with my last-round opponent. My fourth-round opponent missed turning his losing position into a draw. In round 5, I turned my winning position into a draw. More 🡢

Win with the Caro-Kann

International Chess Day: The Caro-Kann

In 2021, Gambit Publications published Win with the Caro-Kann. The authors, Norwegians Sverre Johnsen and Grandmaster Torbjørn Ringdal Hansen, recommend specific lines for Black. The book’s specialization is a plus if a reader is looking for a repertoire. It also is a useful guide to selected lines of the Caro-Kann Defense, if you are teaching chess for International Chess Day, July 20, 2021. More 🡢

Abhimanyu Mishra

How to learn chess

With the success of the Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit, many people are interested in chess for the first time. Although chess has a reputation of being a difficult game suited for smart people, anyone can learn the rules of chess. Becoming a grandmaster, however, takes a lot of work. More 🡢

Chess question from a celebrity fitness trainer

How do you not get better at chess, asked celebrity trainer Vinnie Tortorich. His podcast guest, US Chess Senior Director of Strategic Communication Dan Lucas, had said that he had reached his rating ceiling. Tortorich refused to believe that Lucas was not improving at chess, since Lucas’ job immerses him in the game. Also in this article are two positions from a Mechanics’ Institute Twitch broadcast. More 🡢