Learning Chess

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

The Puzzler

The $10,000 Puzzler Hunt, Chess, and Thank You Notes

Can you solve mind-bending puzzles? Then you might win $10,000 from a contest, still active at the time I am writing this, that began May 3, 2022. The contest introduces a book which contains, among other puzzles, several chess puzzles. That book’s author, along with another author, deserve thank-you notes from me. More 🡢

The Girl from Riga

Suitcases, war, chess, and the d5-square

Refugees may pack suitcases before fleeing their countries. Professional chess players pack suitcases to travel to their next tournaments. While refugees do not know where they will live, chess players know to control the d5-square. More 🡢

GM Hikaru Nakamura

From Wild Card to Candidate: Hikaru Nakamura

Grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura won the 2022 FIDE World Chess Grand Prix, earning his spot in the 2022 Candidates. Nakamura was originally a “wild card” pick by FIDE to participate in the Grand Prix. More 🡢

Jarred Tetzlaff and Alexey Root, photo by Ryan Deering

Emotions in chess: Let it Go

Certain emotions may distract chess players from finding good moves. This article suggests two strategies, let it go and avoid obsessions, that may help players achieve emotional states which are better for chess. More 🡢

Defending under pressure

Chess book review: Defending Under Pressure

Dr. Steve Hrop, a psychologist, achieved a peak US Chess rating of 2192 in 1988. His book Defending Under Pressure: Managing Your Emotions at the Chessboard was published in 2021 by Mongoose Press. This article is a review of Hrop’s book. More 🡢

Hikaru Nakamura

Like Cats and Dogs: A Chess Fight

Some chess games resemble fighting like cats and dogs, with each side’s chessmen engaging in attacks and counterattacks. This article presents one such chess game, played in the first leg of the FIDE Grand Prix 2022 Series. More 🡢