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is chess in the Olympics

  There is currently no chess in the Olympiad. The Chess Olympiad is a chess competition officially organized by FIDE since 1927 and takes place in even-numbered years. Before World War II the event was occasionally held every year. There was also an unofficial Chess Olympiad series that ended in 1976. Although chess is covered in the sports sections of many newspapers around the world, it is not one of the recognized sports in the Olympic Games. However, FIDE is now a member of the International Olympic Committee and follows its rules. This means that chess could one day become an Olympic event, although most knowledgeable observers say this is unlikely. The World Chess Championship is a competition held annually by the international chess organization FIDE to determine the World Champion of chess. Both men and women are eligible to participate in this championship. The World Champion does not have to be the player with the highest Elo rating: the 2006-2007 World Champion, Vladimir Kr

Playing Chess in Faster Time Controls

When I started playing online chess, I stuck with 15-minute games because I couldn’t imagine playing faster games. I just felt that it was too much pressure and that I wouldn’t be able to keep up so I would simply end up losing on time. But I wanted to explore and try out some new things, moreover I wanted to hustle some people and I thought playing with faster time controls would help me do that. I was dead wrong.

One of the first quick games I played was a 10+1, which does not stand for 10 minutes with one-second increments rather it stands for 10 seconds with one second increments. It was a foolish decision I know but I was able to hustle some games from my opponents by just moving any piece and burning my opponent’s time. I wasn’t playing strategic or even a tactical game, I was just obsessed with beating them on the clock. But as I faced stronger opponents, it became more difficult to keep up because their moves made sense and I mine were mostly trash. So I thought that perhaps I should bring it down a notch and I tried 5-minute games.

I was a bit more successful in the 5-minute games since I had more time to think about my moves and I could relax my pace a bit. Now, when I started to get the hang of it, I felt that blitz games were my thing and I just kept playing them. Another reason why I chose to stick with blitz was that I didn’t need to spend a lot of time on one game unlike 10-minute or 15-minute games. And since this was just a pastime, I didn’t need to spend too much time on it. I just wanted to enjoy myself.

Things changed when I started to actually learn about chess. I watched videos about people who are playing chess and through those videos, I was able to pick up patterns and strategies that I would never have known. I am really grateful for channels like Chess Network, jrobichess, and others like it because it helped me build a more solid grasp of chess basics.

I didn’t know anything about the center or development back then. I know I just needed to move my pieces out of their place and I would just go with the flow and wing it from there. I didn’t know how to plan, how to spot tactics and execute or avoid them, and how to checkmate the opponent. The most basic thing I knew back then was that I had to capture all of my opponent’s pieces and mate with two rooks.

So basically, when I first learned chess, I just knew how to move the pieces. Nobody taught me anything about chess strategy or how to think about the moves that I am making. I mean, I wasn’t a chess prodigy so there was no way I would know how to do all that just by having someone tell me what the goal of the game was. It would have been better if I could observe good players but there weren’t a lot of good players in our neighborhood. There weren’t a lot of players, period.

As I said, Chess Network and other online chess Youtubers introduced me to this whole other world of chess that I didn’t know. And I was already around 13 years old when that happened but even then, I couldn’t say that my understanding of chess was enough to go toe-to-toe even with amateurs. So I watched more chess videos and I played more blitz games wherein I applied everything that I saw and absorbed from the streamers and commentators.

Then I started to look for more structured ways of learning and that’s how I learned about the St. Louis Chess Club and Scholastic Center channel as well as John Bartholomew who I would say helped me form the foundation of my chess learning. I don’t consider myself as having grasped all the concepts of chess but through their videos, I was able to pick the essential parts and put them to good use.

I was an aggressive, tactical player before I saw John and how he methodically plays and teaches chess. I learned to become more pragmatic and to be more positional although technically, all good chess players have as the basis of their skill, a solid understanding of chess strategy. He provided me with that knowledge and I was able to see some results in my online games. It even translated into my over the board games although I haven’t had a lot to say for certain that I have mastered the concepts that John often talks about in his videos.

What I learned most from John is how to be a practical player. He likes simplifying positions so that it would be a lot easier to develop a plan around the resources that you have. Since I’m a big fan of flashy, Morphy-esque sacrifices and combinations, I tended to shun boring moves. But seeing how those “boring” moves enabled me to play the flashy ones, I changed my perspective on playing them, and toned down my aggression.

Right now, I think I am a more balanced player. After all the experience that I have acquired online, in tournaments, and in casual games, I think I definitely have improved a lot from when I started. Although I haven’t really done any serious training or studying in chess which I would love to do when I have a place where I can train and play against other people who have the same passion.


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