Fighting Crime With Chess

In recent years I’ve become ever more interested in the value chess has in helping people to develop, whether it be intellect, brain health or character. So it’s great to see programs like the one described in this video clip, chess helping teenagers move away from crime and learn that their every move has consequences:

Whilst we’re on the subject it’s also worth quoting Benjamin Franklin’s essay entitled The Morals of Chess:

The Game of Chess is not merely an idle amusement; several very valuable qualities of the mind, useful in the course of human life, are to be acquired and strengthened by it, so as to become habits ready on all occasions, for life is a kind of Chess, in which we have often points to gain, and competitors or adversaries to contend with, and in which there is a vast variety of good and ill events that are, in some degree, the effect of prudence, or the want of it.

It would be nice to see this aspect of our great game given more coverage and promoted more heavily by governing bodies. To my way of thinking it seems far more important and valuable than Elo ratings, Sicilian Najdorfs, prima donnas et al. When people improve their chess they also improve themselves, and this leads irrevocably to the conclusion that chess can help improve the World.


Author: NigelD

Nigel Davies is an International Chess Grandmaster living in St. Helens in the UK. The winner of 15 international tournaments he is also a former British U21 and British Open Quickplay Champion and has represented both England and Wales on several occasions. These days Nigel teaches chess through his chess training web site, Tiger Chess, which has articles, recommendations, a monthly clinic, videos and courses. His students include his 15 year old son Sam who is making rapid progress with his game. Nigel has written a number of chess books that are available at Amazon: