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10 classic chess principles
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
11.17.2017
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
From a very early moment in our chess journey, we are being explained the importance of the chess principles and that we should always use them as a guideline during our games. While chess has developed a lot in recent years and the use of engines has encouraged play based sometimes solely on calculation, the classics remain very much alive and we still need to use their past wisdom in order to call ourselves complete players. Here are some of those basic principles that every player should know, grouped on the 3 phases of the game.
Training Tips
Visualization Chess Training
Yury Markushin
04.29.2015
Yury Markushin
Position visualization is a very important ability. This ability allows a chess player to calculate tactics precisely multiple moves ahead and most importantly it makes it possible to picture and evaluate the final position correctly. This is exactly what Magnus Carlsen was referring to when he was asked how many moves ahead he can calculate. Carlsen replied that the trick is to evaluate the final position, not simply to calculate the moves.
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5 Ways to Start Thinking Like a Grandmaster
Yury Markushin
11.16.2016
Yury Markushin
Regardless the level of play or strength, there is one thing that every dedicated player can achieve and that is the ability to “think like a GM”. Very often we struggle with problems such as poor calculation skills, lack of opening preparation, little endgame knowledge or even handling the time pressure that prevent us from reaching a higher level.
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How to Play Against a Chess Master – A Practical Advice
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
09.22.2017
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
If you are an active player you have probably already been paired against a much stronger opponent at least once in the tournaments you’ve played. It is clear that this will never be an easy encounter, but it is important that you know how to approach the game and how to set your mind for it. There are many players who feel discouraged when they see themselves in such a situation and they think that they will stand no chance against such a strong player.
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Opening Tips
Uncompromised King’s Indian: Plans with c6 and Na6
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
05.02.2016
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
The King's Indian defense is not everyone's cup of tea. The closed positions that arise from this opening, the large space advantage given to white voluntarily and the race of attacks on opposite wings are elements difficult to dominate. However, the truth is that it is a fantastic defense and a very useful resource to have it ready in your arsenal.
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Playing against the French Defense – Guimard Variation
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
05.15.2017
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
The Guimard variation of the French Defense starts with the move 3…Nc6 against white’s solid 3.Nd2 known as the Tarrasch variation. Black’s idea is quite simple, but also logical. First, he develops a piece with tempo, attacking the center. When white defends the d4 pawn, say with 4.Ngf3, then he plays another developing move and renews the attack on the center with 4…Nf6.  
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The Scotch: A solid and reliable variation against 1…e5
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
12.02.2015
WGM Raluca Sgîrcea, IM Renier Castellanos
Opening theory is like clothes fashion. People play whatever is played the most, what the leading experts play whether they have an original feeling for it or not, like following the latest trend dictated by a fashion super model.  
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