Here’s an aspect of chess that’s not considered in the books; how to improve your results with Feng Shui tactics! I’ve often felt uncomfortable in certain parts of tournament halls, such as sitting directly opposite a door. So if we can choose where to sit, which is often the case during club matches, can an advantage be gained?
There has been no scientific research that I know of on this question but think it likely that there’s a considerable influence. A way to test it would involve a Feng Shui expert designing a chess tournament room so that there was a broad range of ‘Feng Shui friendly’ seating was available, from very friendly to very hostile with seats from opposite sides of the spectrum at each board. After that it would be possible to assess whether the expected rating performance could be changed by where players were seated. Expecting rating performances at each board could be compared to what actually happened and then tests for statistical significance made.
Usually there’s little incentive or funding for investigations of these sort, for example drug companies can’t patent it and it’s difficult to see a military application. But in this case the main issue would be in securing willing participants and it might make an interesting project for a student.