How to be a better Chess Player. Tips from Praveen Sagar


Hello everyone! I'm Praveen Sagar and I currently run Mind Mentorz academy in Bangalore, Kalyan Nagar. I mentor a lot of kids who are taking chess classes, and many of them have progressed really well with the time & effort spent with us. In the time that I've spent conducting chess classes for kids aged between 5-15 years old, I've noticed that the most common reasons a child struggles to get beyond a basic understanding of the game are:

  • Lack of interest - Usually the case when kids are forced to learn chess by their parents.
  • Child Shyness - Some kids feel intimidated to ask questions if they struggle to understand concepts
  • No routine - Some kids who are playing chess regularly, and have qualified to an intermediate stage of them with a FIDE rating, struggle to move upward when they don't try to pinpoint their weaknesses and find steps to overcome them.

It's extremely important that a child who is learning chess, has the right support from parents and the inner confidence and desire to learn the game. This is the first step to get better. Once this step is in place, there are supporting tips that can be looked into to pursue the interest of getting better. Here are some key tips I'd like to share

How to Get better at Chess:

  • Have a Routine to follow - We give access to all our kids at Mind Mentorz. Chesskid is an excellent way to shape your game through Puzzles, Fast Chess, Videos, and Workout positions. Try to spend about 30 minutes per day, or 4 hours in a week in chess where you can set yourself mini-goals to reach. An ideal routine per day is to aim for 25 puzzles, 1 game, 1 video lecture, and 1 workout position. Keeping this consistent, ensures that you are getting the right exposure to a better you, with the chess pieces.
  • Participate in tournaments - Winning or losing should not be your goal. Your goal should be to gain an insightful and rich experience with chess and connect with like-minded people who also enjoy the game. Learn and share your experiences with your friends, and discuss your strengths & weaknesses with them to help you to be a stronger player
  • Ask a lot of questions - As a coach, I love when students come to me with a lot of questions related to their chess doubts, because it allows me to see the interest that they have and the keenness to get better. Whether it be openings, middlegame tactics or endgame questions, always feel free to express them with someone who can rightfully answer. Make sure that you take notes and regularly follow-up on your own doubts to see that they aren't obstructing any part of your game.

    These are some of the many tips that I'd like to share for today, and I believe that every child who learns chess has potential to be the very best! Wish you all the best of luck. :)