Simple Meditation That Works

Whilst on vacation last week I was reading an old paperback that had been in my library for ages. I don’t remember clearly when I bought it, but inside it says it was printed in 1989. It had lain around these many years, just waiting for its moment… Dr. Herbert Benson of the Harvard Medical […]

The Four Wise Men

The London Chess and Education Conference last month gave me the chance to find out more about the chess study run by the Institute of Education, which, you may recall, did not demonstrate that chess improved children’s academic performance. Unusually, the tests were based on public examinations which the children took a year after the […]

Chess Goals for the New Year

With the New Year coming, it is a great time to review our current plans for chess improvement and perhaps set new goals. In this article, I’d like to offer a few ideas you want to consider when planning for the New Year. Take Stock Before setting some goals for the New Year, it is […]

Five Basic Weaknesses

In Hinduism we have an expression that we should try to overcome certain human weaknesses. Here my intention is not to start a spiritual debate but rather show you how this also applies to chess when you are serious about improving. Attachment: It is something like you’re playing what you like rather than what position […]

Visionary Thinking and Improvement

Many of us do daily tactical exercises to polish our tactical skill, but how many of us get such positions in a game? On top of that, how many of us try to achieve those positions and successfully reach them? I think very few amateurs get those positions in a real game. What is the […]

Small But Important Things

Whatever you do, whatever you see, whatever you eat haw an effect on your body and mind. In this article I would like to focus on things other than chess for example your food, your hobbies and other interests etc. Avoid too much spicy food: I have observed that Asians eat more spicy food than […]

A Golden Rule For Good Concentration

There is a golden rule for ensuring good concentration, and that is to limit your focus to simply finding the next move. The problem is that it is easier said than done. All sorts of unhelpful thoughts visit our minds during a game, from chess related things such as rating, qualification and prize money to […]

Pressure and Emotional Instability

Kramnik and Carlsen both lost their matches on Monday and I tried to identify the reason beyond the game of chess. I feel that they lost because both were under pressure to win and pressure to prove themselves, as after all it was semifinal for them. Both played risky games and the result is in […]

Thinking Like a Navajo

I remember reading about how Navajo Indians tended to do poorly with Western style IQ tests because of cultural differences, for example the sun would have very different connotations for someone living in a desert to those who spend their days in a city with running water. Westerners are quick to skip a question if […]