As the world is still coming to terms with the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing crisis, there is one sport that has managed to stay afloat and provide hope and enthusiasm to players across the world - chess. With the uncertain shutdown of most sporting action across India, indeed the world, because of the lockdown, chess found new lease of life online with several tournaments taking place.
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In fact, it was not just the lockdown, the popular Netflix drama, ‘The Queen’s Gambit’, about an orphaned chess prodigy who rises to the top while coping with drug addiction and alcoholism, has made chess appealing to a younger generation which has a major online presence. Chess practitioners are hitting a new high. The reputed chess website, chess.com, has even declared that its subscriber base rose significantly after the series’s release.
Chess has found a way to beat the dreaded virus.
Across the world, online chess games are being held, featuring players of all levels of expertise, from beginners to grandmasters. In late August 2020, India was declared the joint winner, along with Russia, by FIDE at the online Chess Olympiad. This was the first time the prestigious event was held virtually. The event was keenly followed by hundreds of thousands of chess fans, live on YouTube, with the hashtag #ChessOlympiad trending on Twitter.
Going back in time, it was Viswanathan Anand, the five-time world champion, who single-handedly put India on the world chess map. He caught the imagination of the sporting fraternity in India when he won the world junior title in 1987, making it the biggest achievement by an Indian chess player up until then. Anand has since inspired thousands of youngsters in India to take up chess as a career. India is now ranked No. 4 in the world and has 66 Grandmasters, with 2 Indians in the women’s top 10 and 3 Indian men in the top 25.
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Private Chess Classes in Mumbai
Nowadays, it is not difficult to learn chess online. Mumbai is no exception to this rule. In fact, the city of Mumbai, with its street chase and annual chess events like the Mumbai Mayor's Cup, is quite passionate about chess. Chess learning resources and some chess classes are also available for free on the Internet. So, for beginners or advanced level players of chess, an expert chess teacher is never too far away in the City of Dreams.
Brainstorm Chess Academy
Brainstorm Chess Academy works to provide a positive and happy learning experience for every student. Chess players of all levels are encouraged to participate actively, strive to achieve their best, and value the pursuit of knowledge. Chess enthusiasts from the age of 3 can enroll in the Academy. The Academy teachers also take primary school students under their wing and conduct many tournaments.
Experienced, caring, and innovative chess teachers provide high-quality learning opportunities to stimulate and challenge the individual needs and talents of the students. All this is done within the collaborative culture of the Academy that creates a strong sense of community and team spirit.
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Benefits of Online Chess Coaching
- Online Classes and regular doubt clearing sessions are accessible for all students with detailed solutions
- Tournaments are conducted among students and outside the Academy (both online and offline versions).
- Students can create their own game of chess and share it with their coach and fellow players for better suggestions.
- Individual attention is provided in both online and offline platforms.
- A huge collection of practice games, with detailed solutions and better move selections, are available across all playing levels.
South Mumbai Chess Academy (SMCA)
SMCA is a leading chess academy not only in India but worldwide. It has one of the widest networks of chess learning centers and children flock to the Academy in hundreds every year. SMCA has a strong panel of highly qualified and dedicated coaches with great experience. The Academy also invites coaches from various parts of the world to mentor the children by sharing their skills and experience.
Chess Training Programs at SMCA
The chess training programs are designed to teach children chess tactics, along with the importance of practice and hard work. Based on their skill-sets and current exposure to the game of chess, the programs are customized to achieve the best for every learner.
Private Chess Coaching
Private chess tutoring is designed to provide students the personal attention that they cannot expect in a group lesson in chess. Private chess lessons can boost the student's self-esteem and passion for the game of chess. Students get to challenge themselves with innovative chess lessons plans.
Chess students at the Academy vary in their age, rating, and level of understanding of chess. Individual coaching with an SMCA Chess Trainer helps students to graduate to the next chess level, faster.
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Online Chess Coaching
In online chess lessons, a chessboard is shared online, with voice/video chat instructions. The coach demonstrates examples from games played by masters based on different themes. A student gets enough time to think and try his/her ideas with the coach. Lessons are carefully planned for different areas of the game like opening repertoire, calculation, evaluation of the position, planning, and endings.
Once a student comes back from playing a tournament, the games are analyzed by the coach in the next session. Based on this analysis, the coach makes suggestions on how to further improve the game. The chess coach also sends regular feedback and reports to students, including those on training programs, student's performance during sessions, and suggestions for improvements.
High-performance Chess Program (HPCP)
HPCP is designed to help students train like a Grandmaster. The customized courses put students on the track to becoming masters, FIDE masters, national and international champions. By the end of this intense training program, students will master:
- Chess strategy
- Positional evaluation
- Chess tactics
- Various techniques of play
- Art of game analysis
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Students can also gain access to extra learning materials such as Complete Opening Repertoire, Strategy Puzzles, and other courses. They can also have their games analyzed by the strong coaching panel at the Academy.
Chess in School Program (CISP)
This is a unique grassroots program initiative by SMCA to bring Indian school students at par with the global standards of chess.
Joshi's Chess Academy
Joshi's Chess Academy trains chess players with effective Russian methods, as followed by some of the world's best chess trainers. Analytical sessions are conducted after each tournament. Regular practice sessions are conducted for preparing students for the tournaments.
Level I Course
- Introduction to chessboard and chess pieces and their values, the objective of the game, placement of chessboard, arranging the pieces, movement of each piece
- Exchange of pieces, checking the king, getting out of check, checkmate, special moves like castling and en-passant
- Rule of touch and moving, illegal moves, drawing a game, chess notations
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Level II Course
- Elementary checkmates like 2 rook mate, queen mate, 1 rook mate, and double bishops mate
- Problem-solving (checkmate in 1 move, checkmate in 2 moves)
Level III Course
- Problem-solving (checkmate in three moves)
- Revision of elementary checkmate and en passant
- Guiding principles of opening part of the game (control of the center, development of the pieces, minimum pawn move, etc.)
Level IV Course
- Middle game combination techniques like pin, knight fork, double attack, skewer, back rank, discovered attack, discovered check, decoy
- Destroying the defender, deflection, overloaded piece, line opening/closing, square vacation
- Passes pawn, x-rays, windmills, zwischenzug, draw by repetition, stalemate, smothered mate
Level V Course
- Basic endgame ideas of king and pawn endings (concept of opposition, Berger's rule of square, concept of triangulation, rook and pawn ending)
- Basic positions like Philidor's drawn position, Lucena's winning position, etc.
- Other endgame patterns like queen against an advance pawn, queen v rook, elementary checkmate with bishop and knight
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Upstep Academy, since its inception in 2005, has established itself as one of the most sought-after centers for imparting training and organizing international chess tournaments. The Academy has been a pioneer in many regards. It was India's:
- 1st institute to offer scientifically developed curriculum for teaching chess
- 1st to start strategic tie-ups and formal training with schools
- 1st institute with the distinction of a global online chess training institute
The Academy has designed different levels of training offered in different formats.
- One-on-one, private interactive session
- Small, interactive group classes for kids
- Focused group class for kids
- Daily group class for kids
- Private group class for kids
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The levels of learning include:
- Beginner Level: Nature of the game, Square names, Movement of Chessmen, Special moves, Check, Checkmate, Attack, Capturing Pieces, Stalemate, Defence, Exchange, Draw, Basic Strategies
- Advanced Beginner Level: Mate in 1, Basic Checkmates with Queen and 2 Rooks, Basic Opening principles, How to write a game, Tactics (Difficulty Level: Easy) – Double attack, Knight Fork, Skewer, Back Rank & Pin, Mate in 2, Destroying the defender, Distracting the defender, Discovered attack & Check, Mixed motifs
- Intermediate Level: Basic King and Pawn endgames, Berger’s “Rule of the square”, Openings (development of pieces), Tactics (Difficulty Level: Normal) – Double attack. Knight Fork, Skewer, Back Rank, Pin, Destroying the defender, Deflection, Discovered attack & check, 1 Rook Checkmate, Queen vs pawn on 7th Rank, Defending against checkmate, Mixed motifs
- Advanced Level Part 1: Implementing advanced tactics learned during the level
- Advanced Level Part 2: Understanding strategies applied by world chess champions
- Master Level: Gaining international rating by FIDE
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Chess Guru provides online chess coaching in a systematic manner. There are considerable advantages of the online chess program for schools as chess is a very popular extracurricular activity and students get to prepare for interschool competitions.
In the online chess classes with Chess Guru, children are taught the benefits of observing carefully and concentrating. The value of thinking first and then acting is also stressed. Students are taught to think moves ahead. This helps to develop patience and thoughtfulness. Children learn to identify alternatives and consider the pros and cons of various actions.
Chess teachers also help their students strengthen their ability to visualize by training them to move the pieces in their minds. Children learn to evaluate the results of specific actions and sequences. This way, young minds also learn how to develop long-term goals and take actions to achieve them.
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