The Search for Chess Mastery: Chess Vision
He shows it to you by means of suitable game examples, historical anecdotes and explains them why they are so. I'll read to you a few of the paragraphs so you can have a good idea of what the book is like. The following few paragraphs relates to what should go on in the player's laboratory with respect to to preparation. The starting positions from this can and should! But nevertheless, the emphasis should undoubtedly be on complicated middlegame set-ups, full of tactical content.
For the most part, such a criterion is well satisfied by positions arising at the transition from opening to middlegame in present-day openings. It is no accident that it is on such problem set-ups that the strongest players sharpen their analytical mastery. In this way a dual aim is achieved : the development of analytical skill, and a penetration into the jungle of a particular opening system, which one can add to one's 'armoury'.
The Search for Chess Mastery: Chess Vision by Stephen Ward
What generally happens is that, the deeper you go into the jungle of such positions, not only does the evaluation not become clearer, but often the player is faced with an even more confused picture. But this should not dismay the analyst. A knowledge of highly complicated, practically inexhaustible positions opens up enormous scope for the development of the most varied aspects of chess thinking.
- chess mastery: Visualization.
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The result is that, along with the development of analytical potentialities, the player's genuine understanding of chess grows, without being confined within some formal framework. Also, the deeper your analysis of positions in the transition from opening to middlegame, the greater the advantage you gain over your future opponents. Also in opening preparation, virtually the most important thing for the practical player is to be constantly ahead in your 'production secrets'.
Thus you should attempt to be a Sherlock Holmes of chess. And remember that each time you can get down to the essence of the problem by a combination of painstaking and inventive work, worthy of a clever detective.
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It is not all positions, arising on the transition from opening to middlegame, that are full of specific content. But always, after the completion of mobilization, there arise a certain complex of of strategic and tactical problems provided, of course, that in the opening neither side has made some bad mistake, allowing the opponent quickly to gain a serious advantage.
Therefore, when studying variations, you should attempt in particular to see the 'physical meaning' - the intrinsic strategic and tactical ideas. In short, when studying an opening ie. The book is practically littered all over the place with explanations like this. The book also contains some very interesting insights and stories. Take for example, the following excerpt: "Later I became acquainted with several of the training methods employed by Keres.
Thus, for example, he liked to study one and same position from opposite points of view.
Method 1: The extreme memory challenge
If say, a pawn was sacrificed for the initiative, with inexhaustible ingenuity he would seek resources for the attack. But then came the 'dead point'. Keres would turn the board through degrees, and with equal ingenuity and energy would begin searching for resources of defence and counter-play. However very few books have been devoted to combining them together so they make sense. The goal is to find the hanging or undefended piece and capture it. While this program deals with opposition hanging pieces rather than your own hanging pieces, it gets you, the beginner, employing a technique that is critical to chess success, seeing the entire board by using Board Vision.
Board vision takes time to develop but working with a software training program will help speed the process up.
- The Search for Chess Mastery - Chess Vision - Ward?
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This means you have have to constantly check the vulnerability of your material before considering making any move. You have to be patient a lost art in our fast paced, technological world. However, with time, the beginner will do this automatically and systematically.
You have to get in the habit of doing this which is the hardest hurdle to cross. Start with the pawns. Pawns have the lowest relative value which means they can easily push a piece of greater value back.
Then see how many moves it will take for any opposition pawns to reach and attack your pieces. Next look at each opposition piece and trace its line of attack across the board, noting any places squares where enemy pieces intersect with your pieces. Obviously, if you find one of your pieces can be captured En Prise, you better move that piece or defend it.
What happens if the piece being attacked your piece is already defended? First, determine the value of the attacking piece and compare it to the value of your piece.
If your piece is worth more that the attacking piece, get your piece out of the line of fire! If the value of both pieces is even, you have to consider how the exchange will effect your position. For example, if trading minors with your opponent leads to you having doubled pawn or your opponent being able to launch a nasty attack, you may want to avoid the exchange. As a beginner, you have to get good at discovering any hanging pieces before your opponent does. Again, there are various software programs and apps for this type of training.
The advantage to the above mentioned program is the large number of problems your have to solve. The more you put into it, the better your results.
See a Problem?
I recommend that my students do the entire program twice. It should be noted that you should slowly work through the problems and see if you can find a good counter move for the opposition after you make the correct move that solves the puzzle. This will heighten your learning greatly.
After recording a number of albums and CDs he retired from music to teach chess.
He currently teaches ten chess classes a week through Academic Chess. He also created and runs a chess program for at-risk teenagers incarcerated in juvenile correctional facilities. He teaches chess privately as well, giving instruction to many well known musicians who are only now discovering the joys of chess.