17.10.2019 01:14

Chess player's thinking process and qualities of chess thinking during the competitio

Chess player's thinking process and qualities of chess thinking during the competitio

Chess has been officially declared as kind of sport in the end of XXI century. It was promoted in many respects by activity of FIDE. The decrease of role of informative, theoretical preparation and increase of the importance of sportive readiness of chess players has some reasons. Among them such as: reduction of time control, popularization of "knockout-tournaments" with the higher level of mental tension, rapid chess, blitz and development of "chess 960" (chess pieces are disposed non-standardly in initial position).

Chess are "informational" kind of sport. Obviously, training process in chess should include both information, and competitive components. It was possible to consider chess as simple board game at an early stage of the development of the chess game theory, when this theory was insignificant. The practice was an only method of perfecting at those times, as it was in many "usual" kinds of sports, at the initial stage of their formation. Such method promoted development of special mental qualities which were calling "chess talent" in that time. Nevertheless, the modern "theory of sport" demonstrates what it is far not the most effective method of training, specially for sportsmen of high level. Third chess world champion Jose Raul Capablanca is the highest example of this talent, among chess players of that time. He practically didn't work (in the standard understanding of this word) over chess. But, it is very indicative, that the majority of chess players definitely prefers Casablanca chances in the hypothetical game between Capablanca and "simply strong modern grandmaster" in chess 960. Chess 960 is a game, where all main chess principles are same as in classical chess, but the role of debut preparation (information knowledge) is minimal.

Today, it is possible for us to call this mysterious talent - a development of special mental qualities of chess player.

If one will examine a lots of games of the strongest competitions of last years with careful analysis of the errors which were made by strong grandmasters, will see that "information errors", (i.e. the errors connected with bad knowledge of the debut theory, some well-known plan or of elementary endgames) happened far less, than the errors connected with insufficient development of some key qualities of chess thinking. It is obvious, thus, that chess players should think about development and perfecting of these special qualities and it should play especial role in their training process.

Training process of athlete is directed on development of such physical qualities as strength, speed, flexibility, and it works quite well in the kinds of sport, which are connected with physical activity. However, the spectrum of these special "intellectual" chess qualities is still uncertain. And methods of their development aren't clear yet. Some leading modern chess coaches and experts, however, uses the methods of preparation of the chess players, which support development to of special qualities. Mark Dvoretsky (one of the most successful chess coaches of the world) has created the big card file of accurately selected exercises promoting development of special skills of chess thinking. This method partially informational (studying of various typical receptions etc.), but also partially directed on development of mental qualities. Such training system yields fine results and allows bringing up the young chess players up to the serious level of skill.

Nowadays, young American grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura is most illustrative example of efficiency of method of training based on development of special, necessary for chess player, mental qualities. Nakamura uses unique ways of development of strength in chess, which haven't something in common with traditional ones. Hikaru spends the most part of time, playing a blitz games on the Internet, including so called "bullet" (with control of time 1 minute for whole game) what always was considered as absolutely senseless and even harmful activity for chess players. Other grandmasters have much better debut preparation, nevertheless, Nakamura is able to outplay them in the further game, even receiving doubtful positions in a debut. Nakamura was able to bring up his mind's ability for very fast calculation and wonderful mental endurance thanks to many hours of intellectual work which was made by him. "It is possible to be surprised only by extraordinary adaptability of the American: change of time zones, a tournament format, time control - all is nothing for him ..." - the chess press wrote after a convincing victory of Nakamura on very strong tournament of grandmasters, where in additional blitz games Nakamura has won (confidently with account 2-0) former world champion Ruslan Ponomarev. In August 2009 Nakamura has confirmed the brilliant competitive readiness, when became the world champion on chess 960; in the final stage he had crushed one of the strongest chess players of the world Levon Aronian with account 3.5 - 0.5. It is obvious that in chess 960 (at least, at today's level of development of this game) where debut preparation has no such huge importance, advantage in competitive readiness will determine the outcome, in most cases. The special questionnaire of leading chess players and chess experts has been held in April 2009. The objective of questionnaire was to estimate the importance of mental qualities, defined on the basis of the analysis of games of the strongest competitions of last years. Results of questioning have been processed and partially reflected in the following tableau: Tableau 1.
Qualities of chess thinking Average value of quality
stamina 25,72
resoluteness 22,39
flexibility 22,14
quickness 20,95

The most significant quality for the chess grandmaster is his mental endurance (stamina), as it clearly from the tableau. Such significant mental qualities as resoluteness, flexibility, quickness, were also included and estimated. The considerable divergence of opinions is observed in an estimation of other offered qualities, what was connected with specific features of each chess player and their self-assessment. Some chess players have refused to fill the questionnaire, or have filled it anonymously, explaining what some questions has very personal character.

That is interesting fact also.
Thus, having defined the mental qualities, most significant for successful competitive activity of the chess players, we will try to solve the following important task: creating an effective method of development of these qualities by means of special training system. Usage of the modern computer technologies will be especially effective for this aim. Thus, modern chess training system will allow effectively using databases, which contain set of chess exercises and time control means, what will help with the big accuracy regulate intension of training work, which is carried out by means of these exercises.

Grigoriants S.M.

Chess player's thinking process and qualities of chess thinking during the competitio

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