My training plan

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chess training plan

I recently bought the book Chess Exam And Training Guide and I took the whole test in a day (it was a Sunday). The results were eye-opening! Because of those results, I decided to build my training plan so as to focus on my biggest “real” weaknesses first.

chess exam and training guide - results

Before taking the test, I thought that I was pretty good at tactics and endgames and that I was average at strategy and middlegame. I knew my opening knowledge was not great (I hate studying openings) but I didn’t think it was that bad.

In fact:

  • My biggest weaknesses (where the estimated rating was way lower than my overall rating) are tactics, sacrifices, calculation and openings.
  • My other weaknesses are attack, strategy, middlegame and endgame.
  • My strengths (where I scored higher than the overall rating) are defense, recognizing threats, standard endgame positions and counterattack.

Here is the big plan :

  1. Focus on tactics and build an opening repertoire.
    Tactics: Manual of Chess Combinations, Vol. 1a, Vol. 1b and Vol. 2 .
    Openings: The Grandmaster’s Openings Laboratory
  2. Improve my calculation and work on sacrifices.
    Calculation: Calculate Till Mate
    Sacrifice: The Art of Sacrifice in Chess, 21st Century Edition
  3. Learn to attack and improve my positional understanding.
    attack : I don’t know yet. If you have any suggestions, please leave a comment
    positional understanding : The Grandmaster’s Positional Understanding
  4. Focus on the middlegame – especially planning.
    Winning The Middlegame
    Your Winning Plan
  5. Improve my endgame.
    An Endgame Expert
    Retake the test and build another training plan focused on my biggest weaknesses

I decided to focus on one or two weaknesses at a time because I want to deeply learn the topics and transform the weaknesses into strengths. However I won’t be studying only these topics, I plan on having fun studying whatever I want some of the time!

my chess training schedule

As you can see, I chose GM Igor Smirnov as my mentor. I will explain why in a later post.

If you have any suggestions or observations, please leave a comment (especially if you have a suggestion for the attack part!).

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