Chess is a very odd game. Everyone sees it a little differently, and due to social backgrounds, personality types or school study habits we have formed, we all learn a little differently. Some of us are readers, some of us learn by repetition, and some of us learn best by simply observing. If you have been beating your head in trying to figure out why book after book about chess is confusing and uninteresting to you, maybe the answer is video chess.
It could be that you are the type of person who has an extremely mathematical and creative mind, and can picture the chessboard 10 or 15 moves into a combination just by reading the sequences in a book. My best bet is that most of us aren’t that person, and have to work out the more complicated chess stuff over a real board or on the computer using a chess program.
Do you find that after a few pages of studying chess from a book, you are looking all over the room, fidgeting, or losing your place? That’s because for some of us, reading out tiresome chess combinations in the pages of a book is not only boring or rather difficult, but almost impossible. It’s just not effective learning for everybody. Have you tried video chess lessons? If not, it may be time to give it a shot. In the media-driven world we live in today, it only makes sense that chess study should move in that direction, as well.
You can find chess video lectures in a plethora of places, especially on the Internet. They can be ordered from Chessbase.com for Fritz, you can view and download them from chesslecture.com, and some Internet chess sites like ICC and Chess.com have video lectures built right into the interface! The video chess lectures I would like to focus on here are the ones offered for the Fritz interface on DVD, but many others are similar.
Learning chess, in my opinion, has never been so easy. You simply order a DVD, pop it in and press play. Immediately a strong Master appears on the right-hand side of the screen and begins talking about the theme of the chess DVD you purchased (a certain opening, middle game tactics or endgames, for instance). The pieces move by themselves on the chessboard as the Master talks and explains what is going on, and the ideas behind each move and position. Arrows are drawn by the Master to show threats and ideas, as he goes over variations and lines that are sometimes absolutely awe-inspiring. All you do is watch and learn!
One of the best things about video chess lectures is that they are there whenever you want them. Forgot how a certain line in Alekhine’s Defense goes? Simply find that chess DVD and watch it again! Did you lose a Sicilian game because of a tricky poisoned-pawn variation? Simply get a video on the Sicilian and have a strong Master tell you where you went wrong!
Video chess lectures probably aren’t for everyone. There are still a large number of people who learn very quickly and thoroughly by going over page after page in chess books, and that is excellent! In the day and age where the video game has taken over as a favorite past time, however, I believe that watching chess games on a screen may be a viable alternative for both children and adults to learn faster and more efficiently. Try a video chess lecture soon, there really is nothing to lose!