Why I Dropped the London System

The London System is a very easy and effective opening to use at all levels of chess. Magnus Carlsen himself has used it not long ago and it is a favorite among popular chess streamers, Eric Rosen and Aman Hambleton. I started playing chess around six years ago. I came into chess completely blind, not even knowing how the pieces moved. After six months or so I had a blitz rating of 1000 on chess.com, after two years I was above 1200. I was consistently getting bad positions out of…

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Chess Learner Series #10 – 800 To 1800 In 3 Years

The 10th installment in the Chess Learner Series features Max. He is a 29-year-old chess learner who started taking chess seriously three years ago. Max gives us his secrets used to increase his rating from 800 to 1800+! My own notes will be in italics with the initials MJ. ChessGoals may receive an affiliate commission on links to chess.com and study resources. - MJ Chess Learner General Overview How old are you and how long have you been playing chess? I’m 29 and I started being passionate about chess in…

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Most Popular Chess YouTube Channels from 2019-2020

One of the questions we asked on the ChessGoals survey was "If you watched chess YouTube channels for at least 15 minutes per week, please list the channels". Half of the 400 survey respondents replied that they watched one or more chess YouTube channels for at least 15 minutes per week. In this post, we will go over the most popular chess YouTube channels, and also highlight some of the statistics of the users who watch each channel. Most Popular Chess YouTube Channels 10. GMHikaru GMHikaru 12 members out of…

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How To Play Chess Online For Free

Playing chess online is a quick-and-easy option to fire up a game at a moment's notice. This post will review the top websites and apps to play online chess for free, and we will go over some screenshots to get you familiar with the process. This post contains chess.com affiliate links. We recommend chess.com for ChessGoals users, but we also support using other sites. Chess Online Web Browser Chess.com (Chesscom) The world's most popular chess online site is chess.com. Chess.com is free to play, but they do have premium options…

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OTB Chess Events, The Good, The Bad And The Pandemic

Playing over-the-board (OTB) chess is a necessity if your goal is to reach chess master. All official chess titles are given out by FIDE, USCF, or other national chess organizations. Prior to the 90's, chess players only played OTB and they used analog clocks! Can you imagine? We had time scrambles with pieces flying everywhere as the small red flag would fall when time was up. This is where the term 'flagging' comes from for you youngsters out there. The Good There are a lot of benefits to playing OTB…

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How To Create A Chess Study Plan

Creating a chess study plan is an often overlooked aspect to chess improvement. ChessGoals seeks to help you reach your goals with data-driven study plans designed for players of all levels. Effectiveness and Efficiency Effectiveness The two big ones for chess improvement. How many hours are spent on chess, and how are those hours allocated. Below is a plot of annual rating gain on the y-axis and weekly hours spent on chess on the x-axis. There are other variables confounded with rating gains, but there are a few key takeaways…

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Are ChessGoals Study Plans A Good Fit For You?

ChessGoals study plans are designed for all players who would like to gain rating points. Our survey data is based on players rated between 400-2400, spending between 0-42 hours per week on chess, and covering all ages. For players who are already happy with their progress and not interested in rocking the boat, these plans aren't for you. ChessGoals aims to help players are: Struggling with reaching their chess potentialTrying to figure out which chess books or courses to buyHaving trouble figuring out how to increase their ratingUnsure about spending…

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Best Chess Openings for All Skill Levels

Note: This post contains affiliate links to chess.com and Amazon. ChessGoals may receive a commission when you click on these links. The best chess openings can be a bit subjective. Are we thinking about the best chess openings according to the highest-rated chess computer? Or are we thinking in terms of the openings that follow the general principles of chess? For this article, we are going to discover the top openings at each level and discuss why they may be scoring well. To determine the best chess openings I am…

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Read more about the article 10 Most Popular Chess Books
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10 Most Popular Chess Books

The ChessGoals survey began in late 2018 and has run through present day. We have tallied the most popular chess books mentioned by about 400 survey takers. These books also align closely with what we feel are the best chess books for improvement. Here's a rundown from 10th to 1st place with a short description of each book. Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com Disclaimer: These are Amazon affiliate links below #10 - Grandmaster Preparation: Positional Play by Jacob Aagaard Jacob Aagaard is well-known for writing extremely high quality books, and…

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How to Solve Any Chess Tactics Puzzle

Training tactics is one of the most fun and impactful parts of your chess improvement journey. In this post we are going to go over how to solve any and every problem you may face. Step 1: Look For Checkmates A checkmate will always be the correct solution to a puzzle. If you see a checkmate pattern on the board, nothing else matters. You don't need to consider tactical patterns, material count or anything. A quick tip for solving for tactics is always to search first for a mating attack.…

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