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How to get better at chess: Guide for 1800 Elo

Sep 11, 2022 Tutorials
How to get better at chess: Guide for 1800 Elo

How to get better at chess: Guide for 1800 Elo

For this level, I think the most important aspect is having the right mindset. Why? The world average rating is roughly 1200 Elo, so reaching 1800 Elo means a lot. You should keep on a growth mindset, and choose growth over negativity. Keep telling yourself “I can” until you achieve your highest possible level.
Actually, all previous level guide articles will help, but here we focus on a bit higher level.

1. Tactics and combinations: Guide for 1800 Elo

We can’t avoid Tactics on any level of chess.
I am adding tactics to all levels of preparation. But preparing tactics for higher levels is a bit different. Here you should be able to find deep combinations and tactics where you need to give some time to calculate to find a move. Positions that make you think for 10-20 minutes to find the answer is good for now. If you write down all your calculations that will be even better.

2. Positional understanding

As your level increases, your positional understanding should also grow. Here you can go for two simple options: guess the moves and study the games of famous positional chess players. You can find them on the Internet. For example, Jose Capablanca, Anatoly Karpov, and Mikhail Botvinnik.

3. Good coach

You can improve on your own but it will take nearly double the hard work. Having a good coach is a real power-saver as it helps you analyze, train, improve, and prepare for games better.

4. Hard work

You should start playing for many hours per day. The ideas are different for each player, but generally, this level players should give 6 to 8 hrs. If it isn’t possible, then the only option left is to give as much time as you can. And one more important thing is to use your newly learned skill to remember it well.
You can divide your time between study and practice. You can watch paid/free content on the internet. I also suggest reading books but without the board. At this level, players can do this I guess. It will improve your visualization skills.

5. Element of surprise

Add the element of surprise. Your opponent should not able to guess your moves. So, choose some surprising moves in your opening or middle game. The endgame is purely based on calculations but you may surprise the opponent in pre-endgame positions.
For example, in the Sicilian Najdorf variation, the Rc8 move is common but sometimes Kasparov played Rb8. Sometimes he avoided castling or even castled queenside.

6. Chess patterns

Study patterns as much as possible. Once you know the pattern your calculation work gets saved as you recognize patterns. Strong players study thousands of patterns in their chess carrier.

7. Prophylaxis

Develop prophylaxis thinking. Know what the opponent is planning to do and restrict his plans.

8. Collect Grandmaster Game

Collect knowledge-based grandmaster games. Games collection should teach you something. Like, collect some Grandmaster games with the same opening you play, or the same playing style of games, or some particular endings that you face.

9. Next level opening repertoire

Keep updating the opening repertoire with new ideas. One of the best ideas to check your opening preparation is to play a practice game with the grandmaster or any strong-titled player. You can pay them to play or some titled players play with others during streaming online.
Сheck if you can cross opening faze right and get a comfortable middle position against Grandmaster – then you are going good. Also, you can buy opening videos/text courses, and books and keep studying them.

10. Fitness

This can be game-changing for any sports player. You are going to need it. Long hrs of preparation, as well as mental or physical stress you will take in tournaments – your body and mind should be ready for this.
It can be gym workouts, yoga, meditation, etc. You need to keep your body and mind in the best condition. Also, one needs a good diet for fitness. Make sure you are not lacking any vitamins, biochemical cell salts or tissue salt, and fluid levels. You can consult some experts from related fields.

11. Books suggestion

All by Artur Yusupov
1. Build up your Chess 1
2. Boost Your Chess 1
3. Chess Evolution 1
4. Revision and Exam 1
5. Build up your Chess 2
6. Boost your Chess 2
7. Chess Evolution 2
8. Build up your Chess 3
9. Boost Your Chess 3
10. Chess Evolution 3

 

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