danheisman's Blog

    • What's the Main Idea in the Exchange Gruenfeld?

      "What are the main ideas in the Exchange Gruenfeld?" This is a great example of the type of question I can't handle adequately on my show "Q&A with Coach Heisman". It's not that I don't know anything about the Exchange Gruenfeld - although I ... | Read More

    • What's Black's Plan After 1.e4?

      "What's Black's Plan after 1.e4?" We tried a new format in "Q&A with Coach Heisman" (our Chess.com TV show the first Friday of each month from 5-6:30 PM ET). The first hour of the show was restricted to questions about positions - it could be... | Read More

    • To Some Extent, Chess IS Your Thought Process

      "How do you improve your analytical and evaluation skills?" This is a big question, in my mind almost equivalent to "How do you improve at chess?" since the single biggest factor correlating to your playing strength is your analytical ability. Mo... | Read More

    • Biggest Mistakes of a New Coach?

      "What's the biggest mistake a beginning chess coach makes?" That was one of the questions on today's Q&A with Coach Heisman TV show (5-6:30 PM ET first Friday of each month). One listener offered "Not listening to the students!" and that has... | Read More

    • Gotta Get that Feedback!

      "How can I best improve my play?" "Does doing X help me improve?" "My goal is to be an expert. How can I best get there?" These are very typical of many questions I get on our monthly Chess.com TV show Q&A with Coach Heisman (the first Frid... | Read More

    • Answering a Question About Adult Improvement

      This morning I received an email: "Dear Sir, Permit me to ask a question, that has been asked hundreds of times, why after years of playing and looking at hundreds of games of chess, I don’t improve? What makes a youngster become a grand mast... | Read More

    • When You're Way Ahead...

      The most well-known principle when you are way ahead in a game is to trade pieces, but I have found it's more accurately stated: Make fair trades of pieces but not necessarily pawns. There are some positions where you are way ahead and want to t... | Read More

    • USCF Expert Don Latzel passes

      Sadly, I got a call today from a mutual acquaintance telling me that Don Latzel was hit by a cement truck on Thursday and passed away - I assume he was driving at the time. Don was about 85. I always remember Don with a kindly smile and a good wo... | Read More

    • Young Fabiano's Weekly Regimen

      Before he moved to Italy and made a run up to the #3 ranking in the world (currently a close 6th), GM Fabiano Caruana grew up in New York City. Not surprisingly, in retrospect, he was always the top rated player for his age in the US. Among his t... | Read More

    • "Bobby Fischer's Move?" "Yeah, Right!"

      When I started playing tournament chess after my 16th birthday, it was a shock to me how horrible I was. In my first three USCF events (all 6-7 rounds each), I won exactly one game in each event. It's difficult to win that few, considering the swi... | Read More